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TuesdoLinks: Angels starting off well

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With their third win of the 2017 ST, the Halos have picked up right where they left off last ST, with winning. If only the regular season didn't get in the way.

Mitchell Layton/Getty Images

The Angels are 3-0 in getting out of the gate this spring. Maria Guardado points out that the team finished last Spring with a 9-0-2 run, making them undefeated in their last 14 ST games. So what, you say?

Well, past results are no guarantee of future performance, but over the past decade the regular season tends to drift in the same direction as camp. Last year was a horrendous, injury-fueled exception. Setting that aside, there had not been a season in the decade before 2016 when the Angels finished ST with a record of .500 or better that they did not also finish the regular season at .500 or better. Only in 2010 (.460) and 2013 (.333) did they finish ST below .500, and in 2010 they finished the regular season at .494 and in 2013 they finished at .481. They have 35 games this spring. Winning 19-20 of them would be a good omen.

Meanwhile, the Power of Trout strikes again at the heart of a young baseball fan. Pay attention Rob Manfred. You worry about how to engage future generations? One answer is right in front of you.

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A Little Bit of Angels News

The new kids on the block are showing up early. Again it was the newbies who added to the 5-3 win over the Padres yesterday, as Danny Espinosa and Cameron Maybin both had positive contributions. And Caleb Kowart, too. This is all just cake and ice cream stuff. It can't be true. And that Mike Trout guy, really? 2 times to the plate and 2 walks? Is that all he's got? At the very least he could have forced Padres manager Andy Green to toss out the IBB surrender flag...........

Did you like the lineup yesterday? Get used to it. It's pretty close to what we will be seeing most of the time this summer..........

Mountains from mole hills. I have this mental image of Ken Rosenthal having a lunch of burgers and beers in Florida with some friendly Front Office execs, and everybody is just spitballin'. And in the middle of that the topic of Mike Moustakas comes up. Because Moustakas is coming off surgery and the Royals have to think about trying to re-sign him or not before he hits FA next winter, this is a decent topic between all the belching. And one of the execs tosses out the obvious, which is that the Angels would be a possible party what with they having a Yunel Escobar that could use an upgrade and is also on his final year. And Rosenthal puts that into his daily Spring bit, and we got ourselves a story, as Chase linked to yesterday...........

WAR Machine. Something to watch this year will be Mike Trout's assault on the career bWAR leader board. Sitting at 48.5, he is a merely a couple of weeks into the regular season from passing Jim Fregosi(48.7). He's then going to start blowing past a string of Hall of Famers like nobody's business. A little bit after that and he will be the top player all-time named Trout (Dizzy Trout sits at 50.6). He should end up the season somewhere between David Ortiz(55.4) and Frank Tanana(57.9). A great season would push him just past Chuck Finley's 58.4. This will be only his 6th full season in Major League Baseball and that 58.4 mark represents the Top 200 all-time. A truly outstanding season would park Trout in Vlad Guerroer(59.3), Mike Piazza(59.4), Yogi Berra(59.5) territory.

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Everywhere In Baseball

MLB is asking Rawlings to create baseballs for use in MLB games that have a stickier surface. The goal is to eliminate the need to add anything sticky to them (like the rosin bag) in order for them to be used on the field in the typical manner. That way, players can be stripped of all the traditional grip enhancement products and techniques and anything left over would be from a cheat. I wonder if that might mean more fans succeeding in the attempts to barehand foul balls?..........

It's official. We won't have Josh Hamilton to kick around for several months..........I admit that it is far more entertaining to track down Hambone stories when the guy is putting on the show of trying to play competitive ball again. When he is actually just sidelined, it's boring. But at least we don't have to deal with too many of these Hero stories...........

Therefore, it's Tebow time! As we linked yesterday, Tebow has shown up to Mets camp early. ESPN.com immediately put him on their cover page. And Tebow then went out and took the title of 2/27/2017 Batting Cage Champ.......... So, with Josh Hamilton back in the hospital it is left to the Mets to try and outride the carnival they have created in their own camp..........

Yep. Internet write tries to be irreverent on the subject of MLB rules changes, which are merely an attempt to make the game more friendly to modern and future fans. Internet writer immediately learns that fans are the real problem. Nothing like delivering the power of anonymity into the keyboarding hands of the cranky. But the author's real point, in response, is that the true problem might be the Internet itself. The behavioral pattern changes it is enabling among humans, humans being the major component of any sports fan base, it precisely what MLB is trying to respond to in the first place...........

On the flip side, Front Office staff are finding it much easier to profile player personality types and identify good and bad eggs precisely because of the power of the Internet. The seduction of social media can pull from within a player a lot of personality characteristics that the FO can use to figure out the makeup of a ballplayer and how well they might fit into a program..........

The question being asked is whether we are at the High-Water Mark for Shifting in Baseball? My question would be how much more shifting would be physically even possible?..........

If you know where to look, there are Spring Training stats worth paying attention to...........

Bud Black is going to try and win in Colorado by...emphasizing pitching?..........

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The Duffle Bag

Best stat of the day. In 2004 Barry Bonds got on base more times than he got an at-bat. Which inspires this thought: going forward, the "IBB" signal from the dugout shall hereby be known as granting an "Intentional Barry Bonds".........What the hell is this? Security Theater comes to Spring Training baseball? I smell risk management consultants and lawyers..........Baseball Book Review: The Glory of Their Times. Since the Kindle edition is more expensive than the hardback, I'll pass.........How to make strikeouts suck again..........Andrelton Simmons fakes Adrian Beltre into some oddball shimmy move, and it's Beltre who gets the bobblehead..........Usually at this time of year one sees Insta photos of fields under snow. I'm hoping that Petco Park isn't picking up the bad habits of Oakland. You think I jest? Think again, mon ami...........

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Halo-Oppo-ly

Week 4 of our Chance/Community Chest cards!

17-CHANCE-ADVANCE-3

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