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MondoLinks: Another Quad Fest

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4 more games today, in one hell of a AL/NL DS playoff cycle

Off we go to Wrigley Field Patrick Gorski-USA TODAY Sports

Well, you know for sure that things are slowing down in the realm of LA Angels news when you return to HH to create the MondoLinks, and find the WeekEnd HaloLinks still at the top of the page. Well, fear not, my friends. I did manage to scrape together some stuff for the morning coffee. (Oh, and those with keen eyes will observe that this is the first Daily Links from me using the new layout tools. I suspect that I was the very last SBN author still hanging on to the prior editor. I did it just for the sport of nose tweaking!)

Day Seven of Playoff-Links:


A Little Bit of Angels News

This is all I got. Mike Trout..........


October Baseball

Here is something the hype machine is not spending a lot of time trumping up. Nationals hitting coach Jacque Jones was suspended over the weekend. That you might have known. What they did NOT make a huge deal out of was that Jones is in trouble for revenge porn............

Then we move into the weekend results.

For openers, Jose Altuve is flashing a slash line that will re-write the expected baseball coverage for the 2018 season. To date, it stands at an ungodly .727/.786/1.545 with an OPS of 2.331!!! This is the kind of stuff that wraps the MSM around its little pinky and holds it there for a generation. If Altuve were to keep this up, and the Astros make it into the World Series (especially if they WIN the World Series), Altuve will open 2018 as the prohibitive favorite for AL MVP and it will be Mike Trout’s burden to try and catch up with that level of MSM idolatry. And merely being the best player in baseball will not be enough..........

Houston went roaring into Fenway with the chance to silence the Boston faithful for another year. The entire nation would have been grateful. Alas, it didn’t happen. The Red Sox roared back 10-3. Worse, Red Sox fans have grabbed on to the late Tom Petty, ruining his memorial for the rest of us..........

Cleveland is in a dogfight with the Yankees. After losing a brilliant pitcher’s duel last night 1-0 they are up 2 games to 1, but the difference is less the recent Cleveland juggernaut and more the mistake of Joe Girardi. By now you know. Lonnie Chisenhall foul tipped into the catcher’s mitt for an inning-ending third out. But umpire Dan Iassogna misread it for HBP and awarded Chisenhall first bases, loading them up for Francisco Lindor. Girardi should have appealed for a review, and did not. Lindor leveraged his newly found power and hit a grand slam. The Indians carried on with their comeback and won in 13 innings to go up 2 games to none. Girardi knows he screwed up (well, he did not know it then.....but Aroldis Chapman sure as hell knew it.....And Chapman was forced to apologize later)..........

By the way, I don’t want to let the moment pass that all this hoopla over Aaron Judge “robbing” a home run (and robbing ballhawk Zack Hample) is another artifact of the horribly short left right field fence in New Yankee Stadium. The ballpark may meet the MLB minimum standards for down the line, but that wall does not curve out. It’s a big reason why that stadium sees so many home runs, and it’s why Judge’s catch - which would have merely been a normal catch for him anyplace else, looked so heroic..........

And for that Aaron Judge catch, spiffy photo moment, was it not?...........

Also. thank heavens for that pitcher’s duel! Before that, these playoffs have been a kind of pitching embarrassment...........

Over in the National League, the Nats managed to hold on to one win at home, and their series moves to Chicago tied 1-1. More important, Bryce Harper as awoken............Not only did Harper wake up, but so did the army of Joe Maddon second guessers...........

And then, finally, the Dodgers are still rolling over the D’Backs, up 2 games to none. It’s now Arizona’s turn to show a little backbone and keep the Dodgers out of their pool. Again............

MLB playoff broadcasts are doing just fine, thankyouverymuch..........

Aaron Judge is having the Mike Trout of playoffs, so far...........


Everywhere In Baseball

D’Backs coach Ariel Prieto got his fine for using an Apple watch in the dugout. Rumor has it that MLB is threatening to double the fine is Prieto is caught using an Apple watch on the streets, too..........

This could be troubling. The notion of parity throughout MLB might be at a nadir. I’m thinking that is just means that before we get to 2025 all of baseball will have caught up with the tanking model and MLB will be changing rules to put a halt to it...........

Adrenaline brings out a different kind of ballplayer in the playoffs. This would require a different kind of adjustment factor, would it not? I mean, if we go to all the trouble of factoring differences in ballparks, why not factor in differences in the playoffs? Certainly “leverage” in a playoff game is different than “leverage” in June, if we can now measure that player performances are different..........


The Duffle Bag

I am with Scott Patsko here. I want the fairy tale where the man just proposed to his lady, and she said yes, and the two of them are so locked in the joy of their moment that they don’t even care Francisco Lindor just hit a grand slam...........This ain’t baseball. It’s just a case of East Coast Bias whining back. And taking cheap shots, too............Hmmm. How does this work? A Chicago employee (a scout) is auctioning off his World Series ring, but the Cubs are supposed to have some deal where they get first right of refusal?............


2017 IBWAA Awards Voting

As one who is privileged to lose astronomical amounts of time in the loving labor of providing your morning entertainment, I (as are others here on the masthead) am a member of the Internet Baseball Writers Association of America. Not as formal as that fancy name, and nowhere near as recognized as that other baseball writers thingy. But, nonetheless, it gives me the chance to pretend to be serious. So, as serious as I have time to be, here are my 2017 awards ballot results and reasoning...........

My vote for National League Manager of the Year is Bud Black.

Who is going to argue otherwise? Your opinion versus mine, man. Our Man Bud is a good dude, and a pretty good skipper. And he is smart enough to pick a pretty good gig at a pretty good time. I can point to how the Rockies improved their winning in Black’s first year at the helm by 12 games, from 75 wins to 87. But then, you could point out how their win totals have been trending up anyway.

No, my main point is that the Rockies are playing in a very tough Division, and still won enough games to hold off a rising Brewers and a rising Cardinals to make it into the Wild Card game, their fist post-season appearance since 2009. They are, in fact, the only NL team to make the post-season that is not built like a super team. The other teams either had more to work with, or did not work out as well. So Bud Black wins.

Runners up to Black were, in order, Craig Counsell and Torey Lovullo...........