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WeekEnd HaloLinks: Trout Transcendent. Takes LA.

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Mike Trout, Johnny Giavotella and a solid bullpen overwhelmed the Dodgers. The true Kings of LA play in Anaheim. Up next: Trout versus Trumbomb.

Kelvin Kuo-USA TODAY Sports

Now that we have dusted the Dodgers and smoked the smog-choked Doyers fans, the Baltimore Orioles come to town at what might be the best possible time for our team. Our guys are sizzling hot on offense and the defense is playing solid and the bullpen is holding fast. The Orioles are a solid first place team in the AL East, and Mark Trumbo is a key part of that. But the Angels are primed for the visiting Birds.

So if we can get some solid innings out of our three starters, we could have an epic Trout versus Trumbo battle worthy of national attention. It could be a great weekend of baseball, regardless of outcomes.

And we now return LA Dodgers fans to their regularly schedule blackouts.

Have some Trout Rising Links:

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ANGELS ON DECK

The Upcoming Series:

Baltimore Orioles @ Los Angeles Angels - Angels Stadium, Anaheim, CA.

Day Game Time Probable Pitchers TV
FRIDAY 7:05 PM PDT Mike Wright (2-3, 5.20 ERA) vs. Hector Santiago (3-2, 3.42 ERA) FS-W
SATURDAY 7:05 PM PDT Kevin Gausman (0-1, 3.00 ERA) vs. Matt Shoemaker (2-5, 8.49 ERA) FS-W
SUNDAY 12:35 PM PDT Ubaldo Jiminez (2-4, 5.60 ERA) vs. Jered Weaver (3-3, 5.76 ERA) FS-W





From the official team Game Notes:  "ON DECK: ORIOLES: LAA claimed 2016 season series is 5-2…Baltimore claimed previous two season series…Halos are 58-39 vs. O’s since 2004…LAA is 8-3-0 in last 11 season series."

Not sure what to make of this, but Mike Wright and Kevin Gausman have each pitched in Anaheim only once in their careers so it should be a rather novel experience for them. Jiminez has pitched here 3 times. Altogether, this opposing starter lineup has 9 games total against any variation of LAA.

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Everywhere In Baseball

Trout Porn: In the latest recalcs, Mike has climbed into 2nd place fo fWAR in all of MLB this season (2.7 behind Jose Altuve's 3.0). But looking closer, Trout is actually flying up the leaderboard. Yesterday he put on 0.2. The day before that he put on 0.3. Over the past week he has put on 0.7.  He is also now tied with Tim Salmon in career bWAR at 40.5 (so he passed KingFish last night!) He now just trails Jim Fregosi (45.9) and Chuck Finley (52.2) for the franchise career crown. And he is still only 24-years young.............

More Trout: Just because Billy Eppler reminds everyone that Trout ain't going anywhere, and all the other GM's know it, that doesn't stop people from coming up with stupid packages that only make sense in their own minds............But at least the LA Times comes in with a rational perspective on the silliness of it all: " 'It's tough to take five guys and expect all five guys to be really good players,' [Logan] White said. 'You might get their top five guys, and one is an everyday player, and the rest are just cup-of-coffee guys.' "..........

Final Trout: The above all said, Minor League Ball goes to crowd sourcing in an attempt to find a path for the Angels to claw their way out of the mess they are in now, and Mike Trout trade proposals pop up again. Sure, there are some level-headed thinkers there point to the draft and international signings and busting open the wallet, but all those trade package ideas in one place trigger a real truth: is there any other player in the American League for whom those offers would even be packaged as a thought experiment? Hell to the NO! And that, my friends, is the very definition of Most Valuable Player..........

Casting Broadly: The verdict is in! Victor and Gubi come in 9th best broadcasting team in baseball. What's hard for me to believe is that this is the 6th season for the Rojas/Gubicza pairing. It's been great, and it's been fun. Thanks, guys..........

Le Freak is Chic: Tim Lincecum was in Anaheim Friday for his physical. Odds are good that by the time you and I gather again (Monday) he will be signed and shipped off to the minors to start building up his game fitness. Rumors are that it is already done. We are just missing the formal announcement. I will then be taking odds on which guy gets into the rotation first, Lincecum or C.J. Wilson?..............

M.A.S.H. Report: We are in the middle of an incredible run of bad luck when it comes to injuries. But we are not the worst. Nope. Not even top 3. "It seems to be ridiculous with the number of Angels on the DL. It’s like the players are just bringing up lingering injuries all at once. What is going on in the rehab room? Fried chicken and beer? Breaking Bad marathon? The Angels may seem to have the most players on the DL right now, but after running the numbers, three teams have more currently on the DL."

Catch This: It's time to Bandy about our farm talent again. Jett was called up to replace the injured Geovany Soto. Bandy's offense at Salt Lake is off a bit from what he did in 2015, but it would be cool to catch a bit of good luck for a change and have Bandy serve well in platoon behind the plate until Soto gets back...............

Pie Hoes: One of the many blessing to be derived from being an Angels fan is that we are among the few bases protected from too much pizza from Papa John's. There are quite a few ways for baseball fans to win discounts out of Papa John's, and some teams are in a position for more extreme discounts than others. Such things require special analysis. Thankfully, FiveThirtyEight is right there..........

Leverage: When everybody is doing analytics and deep statistical analysis, the area where teams can turn to for your market inefficiencies is...scouting. " Even Beane, who engineered the original revolution away from scouting, is a believer. Oakland's scouting staff, he notes, is larger than it has ever been. 'Everything we do is information-based, but there's some information you just can't get unless you're there,' he says. 'You learn something about a guy who does this or doesn't do that, and maybe based on that small sliver of information, you can help predict success or failure. That's an edge.' "..........

Oops: This is fun. The Sporting News goes on a click-bait tour of the 12 worst draft pick busts of all time. #2 on the list is one Matt Bush. "MLB Career: Never played in the majors". Yeah, this was true, because the young Mr. Bush was a train wreck of irresponsibility. A complete dick of a person. The problem, though, is that this statement about his career is not true. Matt Bush is the same guy wearing #51 in red, here, who lights the match in that whole Blue Jays - Rangers melee last weekend.............(By the way, yeah, our own Danny Goodwin draft bust comes in at #5 on that list.)..........And while on the topic of Matt Bush, the reason he was not suspended for plunking Bautista is because he found the winning formula: be the first pitcher in the game to hit a batter + dn't throw at the batter's head + don't admit to it afterwards..........

Maxing Out: This is way too cool. I actually get chills when I watch these times when an MLB ballplayer plays catch with a young fan, such as this moment with Max Scherzer. . It. Is. Just. So. Sublime.  Kids know exactly how to play catch. It's a simple game, and it brings a connection between those playing it. So for a kid to get to make that kind of connection on a peer level with an MLB hero is spectacular. It's just baseball. It's just fun. It's just a joy. I join Dayn Perry as I say good on you, Max Scherzer!..........And, hell, why not? Let baseball bring out the kid in the big guys, too............

Velo Kills: There is something mysterious in this list of MLB hitters with top exit velocities for their batted baseballs. Velocity on a bated ball is a critical factor in home runs, and yet these names are not dominating the home run leader boards. So there must be something about their swing plane...........

Dekes: Daniel Murphy pulls a fast one on Yoenis Cespedes..........Not to be outdone, Brandon Phillips dekes deking out Juan Uribe with a phony tag..........

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The Duffle Bag

The reason the Yankees are struggling in a time of parity is not because we have parity, but because the Yankees are no longer buying their way to the top of the heap and skewing baseball away from parity............Minor League teams having more fun, because they have more fun.............In the list of most extreme home run parks in every league, pro or con, the Arkansas Travelers' home field stands out...........Still on ballparks, here is a click-fetish review of the iconic historical parks in MLB the Show 2016. Personally, I think those suck precisely because they fail to put the parks in urban surroundings..........I linked about this the other day, but here is your chance to get into the background of all the time and effort that ICE went to in order to nab $40 worth of ladies underwear printed with the KC Royals logo back in 2014...........Vin Scully is precisely the kind of baseball authority who can make Mike Trout more marketable for simply being a good guy..........Erick Aybar got a chicken bone stuck in his throat and needed to go to the hospital to have it removed. Why am I not surprised to hear this about Aybar?...........Stay classy, Texas! And dive deep into the cholesterol, Rougned.............As I predicted, the buzz over minority hirings brought on by the opening in Atlanta is growing..........Also as I predicted, Bryce Harper was going to come down from his lofty offensive perch once he started to deal with real pitching.............The Angels' ballpark was almost 30 years old when the Rangers opened Arlington. And the Rangers are already tired of their current digs...........One more time: Clayton Kershaw a beast on an historical run and the Angels should feel no shame at getting steamrolled...........