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Thor’sLinks: LA can’t dodge Astros’ rocket offense

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Houston shreds LA bullpen, hold off LA home run barrage. Steal home field advantage.

World Series - Houston Astros v Los Angeles Dodgers - Game Two
Having fun, Cam??
Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images

Games like last night sure make writing these Links so hard. Back and forth and back again, only to go forth again. Write, un-write, re-write, cycles within cycles. But, hey, I’m the guy who bitches at the guys bitching that they don’t want to stay up late to watch great baseball on my coast. So bitch I shall not. Not about the job, anyway. Instead, I can link you to the crazy.

I DO want to call BS on MLB Gameday video highlights. Click on one to get a repeat of an important play and suffer through 18 seconds of YouTube commercial, followed immediately by 5 seconds of heavily clipped action. And you pretty much have to let those 5 seconds run by, then click to expand the video to full screen so it’s watchable, so that you can watch a video hacked up so bad it’s not worth squandering time over. But lordy lordy they don’t take any shortcuts on the YouTube commercial..........(P.S. - I particularly love how the moment that Kiki Hernandez was to receive the game-tying pitch in the 10th inning, GameDay - and the MLB.com score page - went down! They came back right after Chris Taylor made the 3rd out of the inning. But they were pretty much spotty from that point on out. Shit.)

Chill on this travel day, on Day Twenty Four of Playoff-Links:


A Little Bit of Angels News

LA Angels doing good deeds in the community. That always gets a plug from me.........

Hrm. First the title: “Bedrosian remains key member of bullpen“. Then the Dek: “Angels remain confident despite reliever's second-half struggles“. Then a look at his 2017 splits, regular and Game Level. And I interpret all that as “The Angels are committed to pinning their relief pitching fortunes on a guy who just spent the vast majority of his most recent season sucking serious eggs.” Seriously, people, in his final 32 games his ERA was 5.97 and his Strikeout to Walk ratio was only 2.29. (Compare to 1.69 ERA and 7.00 SO/W for the first 16 games)..........Maybe we might want to worry just a little that his 2016 was his career outlier?..........

Do you know what we don’t get enough of around here? Trout Porn. Not that there is anything new there.........Also, Part-Time Mike Trout made TheSportingNews All-Star Team for 2017. Justin Upton was an honorable mention..........


October Baseball

The Astros got to start dining on the LAD bullpen in the 5th inning. They had scored 1 run by then. They would score 6 runs in the 8th, 9th, 10th and 11th innings, coming from behind and getting their first lead in the series, then holding on for dear life in the 11th inning to win 7-6, evening up the Series 1 game apiece. This gives home field advantage to Houston, who have re-re-discovered their potent offense. And the pitcher they face back home in Texas, is the rather familiar dude from across the state - Yu Darvish. Darvish has 6 games there, with a slash line against of .139/.200/.215 and an OPS of .415. Yu have to like Darvish’s odds.

This was surely a marine layer killing couple of games. Kiki Hernandez’s game-tying base hit in the bottom of the 10th inning last night was the eighth run scored by the Dodgers in the WS, and the first run that was not driven in by a home run. In fact, between both teams 14 of the total 17 runs so far have been via homers. 9 of the Dodgers’ 10. And 36 total K’s between the teams. 11 total home runs, out of 28 total hits. For the Dodgers, that would be 6 home runs out of 8 total hits...........

Game 1 ratings of this WS were missing all the bandwagon fans of the Chicago Cub from last year. Now we know how many of those there are, exactly..........

I was hoping that the games in the NL stadium, with no DH and more chances for pinch-hitting and/or pinch-running, might have given us our Cameron Maybin moment. And we got it. He got to watch 3 pitches from CF to close out the 10th inning, then led off the 11th with a base hit. He then steals second base, giving you all a free taco! And he comes home with the go-ahead run on George Springer’s home run. He then made a cruising catch to snag the 1st out in the bottom of the inning.

Yesterday afternoon everybody was full of faith. Houston manager A.J. Hinch was firmly set in sticking to his upcoming rotation of Verlander-McCullers-Morton, and Dodgers manager Dave Roberts was poo-poohing the notion of bringing Kershaw back on any short rest. But that was yesterday afternoon. Let’s see what the whispers become once we get past Game 3..........

K Record Watch. That single post-season K record that Aaron Judge just set at 27? It’s still a long shot but when George Springer earned a Golden Sombrero Monday night his tally jumped to 15. He did not K last night, so he is 12 back, with potentially 5 more games left to play.........

It turns out that Adrian Gonzalez was NOT toodling around Europe with his family during the WS after all. He was right here in LA all along. That’ll teach me to trust the MSM........

NY Times writer comes West to watch a baseball game, happens to notice that SoCal has a lot of Hispanic sports fans..........

Speaking of Dodger fans.............


Everywhere In Baseball

This World Series is barely started, and already the viewing community is up in arms over MLB raising the bar on advertising. It’s as inevitable as a flowing glacier and lots of us old-timers will be frustrated. Others will point out that advertising pays the bills to bring the televised games to us for free. I would like to remind that this is not true. Once the FCC shut down the over-the-air analog channel services - which WERE free - almost all households switched to some form of carrier-based delivery. Local channels might feel free if you acquire them outside of your Basic bundle, but now they come over a paid facility. So, yes, we are paying to sit and watch MLB sell advertising time to advertisers who are hoping to entice us into paying for more shit. It’s as oddball as listening to commercials on commercial-free Public Broadcasting or commercial-free SiriusXM radio.........

This is what happens when off-season looms: way too much time on our hands leads to silly things. In this case, we cannot even leave the mud alone. This, from the same people who already refuse to keep the baseball itself fairly regular..........

Can you guess the meme here? AP wire services gives us The Biggest World Series Moments of 1997-2001 (Marlins, Yankees, Yankees, Yankees, DBacks over Yankees), and The Biggest World Series Moments of 2007-2011 (Red Sox, Phillies, Yankees over Phillies, Giants, Cards). But they skip entirely over 2002-2006 (Angels, Marlins, red Sox, White Sox, Cards, Red Sox)...........

The Phillies must not be very popular on the streets. Looks like they may choose their current AAA manager to take over their AAAA squad. Lots of noise is saying that this is good because he knows all the young Phillies talent. I confess to liking it because it’s not an MLB re-tread and I want to see what fresh minds can do. But, still, this feels like promoting the Help Desk manager to take over the IT Department because he knows how to fix the common IT complaints..........(The Phillies ARE still looking to round up the usual suspects.)...........

Derek Jeter still running away from other MLB greats? Giancarlo Stanton, his #1 player and/or #1 trade asset, still has yet to hear from Jeter..........

Here is a nice study in social sciences. This person asks “What’s the first World Series that you remember watching?” The part that intrigues me is that the question is posed via Twitter, and therefore the respondents are all tweeting. These would trend younger, as evidenced by the majority of the responses. And, certainly, the responses are heavily skewed to those who found this tweet and chose to respond. But, still, they are baseball fans. So much active baseball information is communicated via Twitter now I wonder why that it would be that there are still so few 40/50/60 something baseball fans (compared to other age groups) leveraging Twitter for keeping apace of Baseball thoughts, ideas, news and information? (For the record, 1963. Koufax/Drysdale/Willie & Tommie Davis sweep the Yankees.)..........


The Duffle Bag

I wonder what celebrities they find in the crowd when the Series moves to Houston?.................That Monday temperature anomaly was a real thing. I was saying to my peers that in all my years as a CA native, I cannot recall it ever being that hot so late into October. Turns out that the reason I couldn’t recall had nothing to do with my fossilizing brain..........Job Posting: Rockies web development..........Job Posting: Twins Operations Intern..........(I don’t know why I point those out. I just means that someday we are going to lose one of you.)..........I think this is a good idea. Put the wealthiest attendees into some kind of dungeon, away form those who actually come to watch baseball. We need more of that.........Kiki Hernandez knows how to party. Well, at least his dog does..........