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WeekEnd HaloLinks: Storming Seattle

The Angels open the final chapter of their 2016 season against the AL West. Except for some belated makeup dance with the Blue Jays, it's all AL West from here on out. One last month of baseball. Let's get it on!

Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

Here we go, folks. The final month of the Lost Season of 2016. Except for a brief respite with the Toronto Blue Jays - MLB schedulers making a mad dash to fix their final loose threads by jamming the Jays into the middle of our local tourney - this will all be about our immediate AL West foes.

We start in Seattle. We are spoilers. Let us spread misery and frustration throughout our land.

Have some Johnny Bitter Sweet Apple Seed Links:



The Upcoming Series:

Los Angeles Angels @Seattle Mariners - Safeco Field, Seattle, WA.

Day Game Time Probable Pitchers TV
FRIDAY 7:10 PM PDT Brett Oberholtzer (1-0, 7.00 ERA)  vs. Ariel Miranda (1-1, 4.98 ERA) FS-W
SATURDAY 6:10 PM PDT Tyler Skaggs (2-3, 4.75 ERA)  vs. Taijuan Walker (4-9, 4.19 ERA) FS-W
SUNDAY 1:10 PM PDT Matt Shoemaker (9-13, 3.91 ERA)  vs. Hisashi Iwakuma (14-10, 4.01 ERA) FS-W

From the official Game Notes: "MARINERS ON DECK: M’s lead 2016 series 7-6 after taking five of last seven…Clubs split the last meeting Aug. 15-18 at Angel Stadium…LAA swept Seattle May 13-15 @ Safeco and M’s took two of three in initial series at Angel Stadium (April 22-24)…Angels are 84-62 over M’s since 2009."


Everywhere In Baseball

Mike Trout: I have no idea how Trout survived his accident. The video of it sure looks a lot worse than what has been reported from sources other than KTLA............

Trout Porn: We all know that Trout is improving. We see it day in and day out. His K rate has come back down from his ugly 2014 peak, and his OBP is crushingly the best of his career. But let's quantify the whyMike has adjusted to the upper zone, he has adjusted to breaking balls, and he has adjusted to pitches out of the the zone. "There’s also no pitch that Trout can’t handle. As imposing as he has been, Trout is actually getting better by addressing his weaknesses and making the necessary adjustments."..........

Neglect: Recall that Trout article I linked to earlier this week about how people are overlooking Mike Trout's greatness even as he gets better, and that maybe it has something to do with modern standards of celebrity? Well, that article was noticed in Detroit, too. It's observed that fans are not focusing as much on thier opportunity to appreciate their own Miguel Cabrera, Justin Verlander, etc. They may have something there because I, for onw, have just accepted that they will be HoF inductees and just let Tigers fans have their fun with them. Maybe that's what other people do about Trout. But in there is an honest nugget, about how the author's own Tiger fans dealt with their Trout chance: "I had the fortune of attending all three games at Comerica Park when the Los Angeles Angels were in town. I also attended three of the four games when the Boston Red Sox were in town. There was a marked difference between these two series. David Ortiz was given standing ovations during that series and the Saturday game on August 20 was reportedly a sell-out with 37,886 fans in attendance. In stark contrast, on August 27 when the Tigers and Angels played, 33,115 fans were there – remember that the Tigers gave away free hats that night. It was pretty quiet when Trout went up to bat, unlike the madness that ensued with Big Papi. And Trout is much better that Ortiz." Yep, people no longer react to mere greatness. Celebrity requires a hook. Trout needs to do more autographs.............

The Time is Right: Let's call it. Billy Eppler nailed the timing of his trade with the Twins. Alex Meyer is melting into hot lava of late. Last night he went 4 scoreless innings, striking out 6, and his first two pitches nearly reached 100mph. September call up, anyone? Ricky Nolasco, well, we got a couple good starts so far, the last one being brilliant. Against the Reds, but the counting stats don't know that. Meanwhile, over in Twinkie Town the guy Eppler sent away, Hector Santiago, has been a complete dumpster fire since the moment he landed in Minnesota. If the dumpster was kept behind a pet boarding facility. And used for organic waste. And neglected for three months. In the summer. In Mississippi. Oh, and by the way, the other guy in the deal, Alan Busenitz, the prospect Eppler sent to the Twins, was recently demoted from their AAA affiliate to their AA affiliate. So, as I said, nice timing, there, Eppler............

Media Biz: The Grey Lady dies, too. The New York Times has eviscerated their content, clearly in an effort to survive in the modern world. In so doing they have shed all their regional coverage concerning the arts and fine dining. You and I realize that this is because these things have been totally taken over by the Internet already. But the locals there are all aghast. Shocked, even! My favorite part is how certain public institutions are bemoaning the loss of leverage that comes from one crony from the NYT blessing them with kindly words and reaping the resulting financial windfall. Like, oh shit, now you might actually have to do your own job for yourself and market your own value to your target clientele. Where, oh where could there be a communications vehicle that makes THAT possible??..........

Bad Bucks: Dayn Perry goes on a little walk among the thought tulips. I'm not sure that what he ended up smelling are the flowers. Basically, it's about very bad contracts. That's something we know a lot about. His idea is that they are not as bad as we think. His premise is this is because it teaches teams not to do those kinds of things again. I am not sure that Mr. Dayn Perry has been introduced to contemporary MLB franchise owners..............

Miller Time: Some long-timers around here might remember Sam Miller. Used to write for OCR (due in no small part to the influence of Rev) and occasionally used to join the fray here for some good snark. Crushed it by going to Baseball Prospectus as Editor-in-Chief and became hugely famous and important. Wrote a fun as shit book about acting as co-GM of a minor league team and building a roster strictly according to advanced metrics. Well, Sam has joined the Dark Side of the Force. And we are the #cesspool. Clearly, the Dark Side pays better, but we still have the much cooler Book of Rules. Enjoy the Big Mickey, Sam.............


The Duffle Bag

Tim Tebow has some, er, interesting comp projections...........We kept Jeff Mathis because this guy was not as athletic............Oooh. Maybe we don't want to be holding on to those Josh Reddick dreams after all..............Chris Iannetta is spending too much time watching Bryce Harper highlight videos. (By the way, shouldn't he be out for not remaining in the base path??)...........Even when you ARE paying attention, foul balls can still be scary things!...........By the way, foul balls can be scary beasts for the players, too..............Long, long ago the Angels proved to the world that Wins don't mean shit.............Yasiel Puig: he's baaaaaack!

I know. This is COMPLETELY off topic but I cannot help myself. Diving through the dumpsters of the Internet daily to track down nuggets of interest for you all, sometimes I pull up something unrelated but too compelling to ignore. At first I snagged this article for a friend who is owned by the most obese cat I have ever laid eyes upon. I would have just DM'ed to her the link and moved on. But something caught my eye. Who the shit would have believed that we have a Federal institution dedicated to the scientific studies of cats eating???