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WeekEnd HaloLinks: The Magic of Mike Returns

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We now return the world of American Baseball Journalism to the normal channel of going to sleep too early to witness The Greatest Player of our Era outshine the mere mortals celebrated elsewhere.

Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

This is the time that is worse than the offseason. Everybody is still here, but nobody is doing anything. Lots of folks are making shit up, though. It gives writers something to do. Things like mid-year make-believe awards and stuff. I will spare you most of that. But we have One Big Thing upon which to focus. Everything else is mere chatter and fluff.

Mike Trout is back, and only Josh Mayhood is going to notice.

Catch up on Welcome Back Links:


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A Little Bit of Angels News

The Great Hope tonight is that the Angels continue to play as well as they have without Trout, AND that Trout takes that level of play and boosts it up to another level.  I think we should all chillax a little bit. He will more likely just be normal human All Star caliber Trout and be less than transcendent for a month or so..........

The cost of Trout arriving in Anaheim is Eric Young, Jr. being optioned back to Salt Lake............

Andrew Heaney threw last night. It's been a year. We might see him back in Anaheim yet............He saw 11 batters, lasted 5 outs, gave up 5 hits (2 of them doubles) and a walk, struck out 4, and surrendered 2 earned runs (3 total)...........

Angels, reportedly, don't like Dee Gordon's salary and are among teams asking Miami to pay some of that down. There has to more to it than that. Gordon is on  his way to a 3 WAR season. When he is not busy serving a drug suspension, the guy is worth far more than his annual salary (scroll way down to the "Value" table). So Eppler could jump to the head of the line by agreeing to take on all of Gordon's salary, provided he is also offering acceptable talent returns............

Jon Heyman doing Jon Heyman things. Just how is it, beyond the obvious need and Free Agency fit, that Mike Moustakas is being linked to the Angels? Is it Hheyman pulling things out of his butt? Heyman quoting other guys sitting around pulling things out of their butts? Or is it Heyman doing his normal shilling for Scott Boras and Boras clients?..........

Any team out there want to take a shot at signing an extra 4th round draft choice without any penalty?.........

Yeah. No reason to give up on Skaggs or Richards yet. But next April? Ask me again then...........


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Josh Mayhood's Library of Mike Trout Hagiography

Mike Trout is back!

Mike Trout is your 2017 ESPY Winner for Best MLB Player, besting Kris Bryant, Max Scherzer and a couple of guys representing Boston..........

Baseball Reference gives a shout out to Trout for being the first player to finish a 1st half of a season with an OPS of 1.200 since Mickey Mantle in 1957. That was 60 years ago...........And he is only the 9th player since 1913 to do that at his age or younger..........

Mike got into an NBA twitter battle with his teammates, and lost...........

Are you missing a signed Mike trout bat from your collection? Sure you are. Do you love bat flips? Sure you do. Baseball America will give you one such bat if you show them your prize-winning bat flip concept..........

Trout-Watch-7-14a

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Everywhere In Baseball

Ouch! Jose Quintana just went from the White Sox to the Cubs. And we LAA fans just learned that all the merchandise in the aisles of Sears have Nordstrom price tags..........

Hardball Talk directs us to Baseball Think Factory, which is launching a new series for fans to take back the names of baseball stadiums from corporate sponsors. No. Our team does NOT play home games in a place called Anaheim Stadium............

The Marlins. So, so Florida. I hate that they TWICE spent money they could not afford to stock World Series winners that they had to immediately dump afterwards to keep from going broke. Those two trophies are the only things that keep them from being the worst abomination of MLB franchises. But those trophies do exist. The Marlins do have a history. And Grant Brisbee brilliantly powers his cigarette boat of seafoam green and flamingo pink perspective right through all of it............

Nobody wants Justin Verlander? What's the deal? Just because he is having one crappy season and is still owed about $90 million in salary? Not as if Verlander will be sad about anything. That $90 mill is guaranteed, after all. And he has a decent family life............

Colby Rasmus, a pretty good ballplayer when he is healthy, ain't healthy. And his recovery appears to be going poorly, frustrating him enough to step away from it all for a while. He won't be back this season............

The Rangers are on the verge of failing enough to become the biggest sellers on the block. A few more losses to pile up and Yu Darvish AND Cole Hamels could be offered up for sale. Those guys would throw a huge monkey wrench is everybody's current expectations about the playoff odds..........

Remember how pissed we all were to see Matt Harvey carving up the National League and knowing t hat he could have been a Halo with a moderately better signing bonus offer just a few years ago? It is starting to sound like he missed his true destiny after all. His health profile reads like he belongs at the LAA pitcher DL party after all............

You want to see proof of East Coast Bias? Here you go. MLB needs to market the hell out of the next Face of Baseball. All those words describing greats of MLB, and not a single one is "Trout"...........

Here is a valuable thought experiment in favor of robot umps. The basic premise is that the strike zone is changing too fast, and in ways far different between right-hand versus left-hand batters. The result is a growing inconsistency, which will drive players AND organizations to desire the stability of a standard zone in order to develop, and plan, in order to compete successfully.................

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The Duffle Bag

This is classic. The Quintana trade was not broke by Rosenthal or Heyman, etc., but by reddit. And CSN Chicago was forced to acknowledge this...........I read about Marlins Man expecting to find out he is actually a good guy. Instead, he's as obno as I originally thought...........Sammy Sosa is getting to be really, really weird..............Who knew that pro athletes were so sensitive? Bartolo Colon didn't get the love he wanted from Mets players, so he signed with the Twins............

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Jordan Serena Destiny Watch

No Serena last night. He has had only 3 appearances since coming back to the 66ers June 1st............

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