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Thor'sLinks: Angels sweeping their way to finish

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Continuing a rare cluster of wins, the Angels swept the A's right out of Anaheim. But not before the A's could get in one last shot The Face of Baseball.

Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

Here in the last week of the season, Oakland is really putting a move on the draft order. While the Angels plummet as a consequence of the fantastic ass-kicking they gave to our northern cousins, the A's were gifted due to the same ass-kicking. Going into the series Oakland was sitting at #7 and the Angels at #8. But Oakland sure wanted to move up hard. Now they sit at #5. And now we sit at #10, which happens when you go 9 and 3.

Oakland got themselves humiliated up a few notches, which would be a problem if they had a respectable history of doing well with their first round picks. But they don't. So they just have to take their beating and go home. The Angels finish the season 12 and 7 versus the A's, outscoring them 93 to 75. Imagine if we had had a full team. Or no Brett Oberholtzer.

Quick update on Mike Trout, who was plunked high on the shoulder - inches from his head - by a John Axford wild-assed fastball. He has a big welt, but he wants to gut out the last three games. X-rays today. Well done, Axford, at least you got to flash your sporty beard.

Have some Take One Last Break Links:

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Everywhere In Baseball

Oh, Sosh...Sosh...Sosh. What are we going to do with you? Your lack of consistency on Mike Trout's MVP worthiness makes you a rather unconvincing authority. Sure, jumping on the Trout bandwagon now makes you sound real great to the booster club, but the rest of us get our news beyond Facebook and know all too well the many times you have poked the "must be on a contender" bear...........

Garrett Richards got to face real batters yesterday. I checked my phone. Nobody called me to bring a bat. I would have done it.............

Pete Rose's attorneys really really want to see Pete on the Hof ballot. We have it in writing. The TL:DR version goes something like "Pretty please with a cherry on top??"...........

Tim Tebow hit a home run immediately upon arrival in Instructional League play. Tim was batting 1.000 and slugging 4.000 and the internet went wild. Then his next 5 at-bats happened. Tebow is now batting .167. And the Internet went quiet again............

Well, it looks like we can put to rest any notion of Brandon Guyer catching up with the American League record of 35 Hit By Pitches set by Don Baylor back in 1986. Guyer sits at 31 and really tailed off in September, recording only 2 so far. Since he platoons, he has only maybe 2 games left in his regular season...........

Here is a tiny tidbit, brought to us by reddit. Mark Teixeira had gone his entire career without hitting a walk-off home run during the regular season. Teixeira retires in 5 days. And he peed on the Boston Division clinching night by hitting a 2-out, 1 strike, walk-off grand slam................

Wait...what?? Cheating and fraudulent activity within DraftKings? Next thing you know somebody is going to be telling us that online poker is a fraud. And that there is no Easter Bunny, or Santa Claus..........

Aha! Perhaps the surge in MLB power is not that the power hitters are hitting more home runs, but because the non-power hitters are doing so. In other words, perhaps we are seeing that the bottom of the talent range is rising............

Yep. This really is an ongoing, chronic problem in Major League Baseball. Not enough minority hiring within the ranks of the Front Offices.  That article to which I link will, itself, link to the root article which was written by Murray Chass. As bad as he is, Chass truly has been in the game long enough, and within the levels necessary, to know that it's all about cronyism. It used to be that I would argue back that it's not fair to blame baseball when not enough eople from minorities are getting into the staffing ranks at the lower levels and putting in their time to work their way up like everybody else. Then I stopped pooping rainbows and grew up. In the link is an excellent point: "...it’s worth observing that one way baseball could better populate the executive ranks would be to hire more minorities in entry-level positions. What a better way to become a friend and crony than to have, you know, been there a long time? The game has had a horrible track record in doing this, however, for one simple reason: it pays crap wages for all but the highest of executive positions, pushing away candidates for whom money is, in fact, an object to pursuing a dream in baseball..." Exactly. Teams exploit interns and horde compensation at the executive level. And they hire their friends. I'm one of the biggest Jerry Dipoto fan-boys around, but in this respects he is Case Study #1. Just look at how he made the jump in his own career path, and then think about all the guys he has been hiring away from Anaheim and what that means to the career trajectories of those guys. We have been watching this with our very own eyes.........

Yeah, you know what? I hate Kevin Costner's narrative voice as well. Maybe as much as he does...........

Hmmm. LA Angels Baseball TV has not been too very popular this season. It's inexplicable, really. Looking at the ratings, they are down a full 29%. They rank 2nd in their market across all network TV channels, and 2nd among cable channels. That is, in fact, worse than the Dodgers, who share the same market, and the Dodgers are the ones who have their fans locked out of their own broadcasts. But, interestingly, the Angels outscored the Red Sox on ESPN national broadcasts and almost caught the Yankees. If only they were adored as much as the Royals..............

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Draft Tracker

Updated tracker. At this point the Angels can not lose themselves into a draft spot any higher than 8th. They sit at the 10th slot, 2 1/2 games away from the Rockies in 11th with 3 games to play. They can finish no lower than 11th. But look at the WAR forecasts. It's a gargantuan talent jump moving from 10 to 11.

Draft-Tracker-9-28

The 2016 slot and pool monies were found here.

The Michael Jimenez Study is found here.

The HBT 2014 Study is found here.

The HBT 2012 Study is found here.

The Sky Andrecheck 2009 Study is found here.

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