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Super Moon-do-Links

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A sign directly from the heavens should always be construed as an omen of good on behalf of a team named the Angels.

Kevin Winter/Getty Images

It's Monday morning. The quit week before the Thanksgiving holiday week. The GM meetings are over, and the PTO times of the winter holidays are almost upon us.

But we have a message from the heavens to brighten our hopes. The first of three consecutive Super Moons, something not seen since 1948. That's before when even I was born. I know, right???

We are fans of the Angels, agents who rule from the heavens. This moon can only be a sign for us, yes? Let's roll with that. And pour yourself a cup of coffee and pony up for some Links:


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A Little Bit of Angels News

To recap for those who just woke up from a long weekend, Gary DiSarcina is no longer to be found waving baserunners in Anaheim around the base paths indiscriminately. Now he will be waving defenders in Boston around the outfield indiscriminately, as the new Red Sox bench coach................

The Angels DFA'd Rafael Ortega over the weekend. I, for one, am kind of bummed. He might land in Salt Lake, but he really needs to find a OBP stroke. But I really liked his outfield arm............

That contract Eppler used to sign Jesse Chavez to the pitching staff over the weekend is heavily loaded with incentives. There is $2.5 million at stake just by reaching start targets. Yeah, right. Unless Chavez is on one of the Fernando Valenzuala kind of runs, no team is going to risk paying out the top end of those kind of bonuses when they can just park him in the bullpen for a couple of weeks. Just ask Coco Crisp..........

Oooh. Aren't we smart? We can write a contrarian article that claims Mike Trout ain't all that. Because he strikes out a lot (actually 2016 was nearly the lowest of his career and merely 45th worst out of all qualifiers). And because he cannot hit well against premier pitchers (at least, according to the author, a few NL pitchers against whom he Trout has very few total at-bats in his career). And he is not stealing bases all the time. And his numbers are inflated because he has to carry the entire offense (????). That WAR thing? That's just some stat that obviously doesn't care about strikeouts and baserunning and defense and hitting against top pitchers. Obviously...........

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Everywhere In Baseball

Baseballs hurt, people. After more than 100 years of this public sporting event in the books, I am not going to stop telling people to pay attention until somebody shows me all the data that proves that fan injuries are on the rise. As you will read in the link, the complaint isn't that their are no nets, but that they are in the wrong place. In other words: more and more netting............Well, godspeed Mabel Ball. You got to die happy............

We are not hearing much about the CBA negotiations. Since the principals would typically appeal to the public if things were going badly, trying to gain the upper hand with fan support, and since there are only three weeks remaining until the current CBA expires (impacting a lot about how player deals are negotiated and rosters are built, both of which are highly active now), we should assume that the players are rolling along merrily with the owners right now and none of the major items we would expect to be sticking points are causing any hassles...........


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Trade Winds

So Brandon Phillips, All-Star & Gold-Glove and MVP vote getting second baseman for the Cincinnati Reds, has decided that maybe he would be willing to waive his no-trade clause after all. For the uninformed, it's well-known that Phillips has refused to waive that in the past. And why should he? He negotiated it, and it is worth money. He should be compensated to set that aside. Anyway, he has refused to leave the Reds for some time now, even as the franchise sinks lower and lower into their down cycle of tank-ti-tude. But before you start drooling, here's the thing: nobody really gives a shit anymore. Phillips is already 35 years old, is now a one-year deal, costs $14 million, and has deteriorated so much of late that he was barely better than our 2B platoon last year............

Contract extensions are ruining our winter free agency fun. That's why we don't get to get all giddy about any of these guys...........

Wait. What? Jose Bautista, Baseball Enemy of the State of Texas #1, might actually sign and become a Texas Ranger?? That should make for some fun times in the Arlington clubhouse.............

How is this for nixing your own market? Derek Holland has already let it be known that he will go back to the Texas Rangers with whatever ends up as his best offer and give them the chance to match it. If they do, he signs back with Texas. So put yourself in the chair of any other GM. Why would you spend any time dealing with Holland,a pitcher who is not really a top-shelf rotation option, when you know all along that if you manage to beat out all other suitors it only means that Holland shops you back to his old team and you lose any matching deal? How can that possible help Holland maximize whatever would be his return on an open market?..........

Jerry Dipoto is firing up his wheeler-dealer mentality up there in Seattle again. He really churned it up last year, his first with the Mariners, and is kicked it into gear this past weekend. Gone (or going) are first baseman Dae-Ho Lee and outfielder Franklin Gutierrez.  Coming on board, in trade with Oakland, is Danny Valencia (for a minor league prospect). Valencia is not one fo gys that makes me worry about Seattle, though, as his numbers against eh Angles are middling and his numbers in Anaheim kind of poor..........

The Blue Jays signed our now well-traveled Kendry Morales. This means that Edwin Encarnacion is probably not returning to Toronto...........

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The Duffle Bag

The legend of Shohei Otani grows. That's batting with cheat codes..........Jered Weaver, take note. If you can master the knuckleball, comebacks at the age of 40 might still be possible...........If that whole Major League Pitcher thing doesn't work out for Trevor Bauer, he has a future as a Middle School math teacher...........President Warren Harding had once owned a professional baseball team? Huh. Who knew?...........Daniel York, the dude behind keeping the Dodgers off of television, turns out to be a hard-ass. As is often the case, business people who are hard-asses eventually go too far. And then they get busted...........Looks like the Diamondbacks are going to start walking back some of those fugly uniforms they rolled with in 2016..........

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