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MondoLinks: Halo fans swept off our feet.

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The Angels taking the 4-game uber-broom to Seattle flips places with the Mariners for the Wild Card spot. And just like that, LAA has overcome a maelstrom of peril to restore relevance.

Joe Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports

Isn't Baseball great? Weekends such as this are the moments of brilliant exhilaration that come amidst those long stretches of insufferable failure. A lot of comments here going into the weekend were hopeful for a split, and with a 4-2 win yesterday, they actually took all 4. There are a lot of games still ahead, a lot of which will be full of more baseball misery. But weekends such as this one prove that those large servings of misery and frustration don't mandate a terminal condition. Hope exists until the fat mathematician reckons.

This is fun shit. This is the high that rewards the faith through all the lows. This is why it's better in August than it is in December. Live baseball is great stuff. Enjoy it. Now.

And, most of all, enjoy the reality that a lot of the success that it is this season has come from the patchwork quilt of n'er-do-wells.  There are quite a few very solid Major League Players in this franchise. Guys who, if healthy, would be leading the team to a solid playoff lock by this point. They are all probably great guys. But they are not the guys doing the work. Instead, they are guys who (like us) are a mere rooting interest - albeit with much better seats. And they root for the guys we root for. They guys we are left with - the guys we are all actually rooting for - are the extraordinary Trout and Simmons, plus a preposterous list of Unbelievables.

Enjoy the hell out of it, people. This is happening. It'll be very cool if it keeps on happening. But you woke up today a fan of a team that actually is in contention for a playoff spot.  And it was only a 2 1/2 weeks back that these guys were 10th out of 15 AL teams.

Have some Wild-Card-Quality Links:


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A Little Bit of Angels News

One piece of the patchwork that would be great to get back in time to make a difference would be Andrew Heaney. This was, at one point, not even considered an outside chance. But Heaney keeps doing well, and is on the verge of forcing some serious roster decisions...........

Andrew Bailey is back, and Cesar Puello is DFA'd to make room..........And Shane Robinson was out-righted to Salt Lake..........

Stop if if you have heard this 15 times before. Alex Meyer's recovery has received a setback............

A sweet side-effect of having a WC spot for the moment is that it forces odds-makers to reconsider one's possible chances of actually getting into the playoffs. And this is what has magically happened for the Angels. Seems kind of silly to me. I would think that when they handed out the poorer odds a few weeks ago they understood that a winning streak or two was a possibility..........

Don Baylor's funeral service was over the weekend, and it was a testimony to the man more than the player, which is something we fans need to know about our heroes long before they die away...........

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Josh Mayhood's Library of Mike Trout Hagiography

Now what is this? MSM writers wishing for Mike Trout the phenomenon to evaporate?...........

Watching the American League WAR race, mis-captioned as the race to the AL MVP crown. Trout is starting to regain ground..........(But Chris Sale is becoming the hot topic as Aaron Judge retreats and Jose Altuve cools off from uJuly.)..........

Trout now has 329 Plate Appearances, needing 173 to reach Qualifying status. Should he play every one of the remaining 42 games, he would need to average 4.02 PA's per game..........

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Everywhere In Baseball

Bryce Harper is not going to be a guy we get to see this week. He was cut down by the same teacup of calamity that afflicted Mike Trout. In Harper's case, after a 3-hour rain delay the ground crew apparently failed to sufficiently dry off first base. Harper went dashing across said base, hit it poorly and dropped like a stone..........The base is being blamed, and Harper's agent Scott Boras is blaming MLB for the bases...........The latest is that Harper suffered no season-ending injury, and will be back..........

You may have noticed that Aaron Judge has stopped being the GOAT coming out of the All-Star break. There are theories (regression to the mean not being among them). The best one, from a severe snark point of view, would be that the umpires are to blame...........

The Marlins might have been sold to the Derek Jeter group after all..........And social media has all the fun with it..........If it is real, it might not be such a bad thing after all. Rumor has it that the pachinko machine might be the first thing to go..........

West Point got it's first Major League Baseball Player. That is the kind of sentence that sounds both unbelievable and totally expected at the same time. Anyway, Chris Rowley picks up a Win in his debut..........

Have fun with the new CBA. Or, at least, have fun with HardballTimes, having fun with the new CBA...........

Wha..? The Mets and Yankees don't like each other? They can't even seem to figure out how to pull off an every-day transaction with each other? A shocking turn of event, I know..........

Sigh. I wish we knew what it was like to have a pitcher around long enough to have the hot hand. We know about the cold hand. But the hot hand? Seems like fond memories...........

The Little League World Series kicks off. Here is the schedule and other info..........Rancho Santa Margarita is the representative form The West...........Seems like the RSM coach is a hot-head............

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The Duffle Bag

Little League shit. Kris Bryant scores all the way from second base...on a dropped strike 3...........Tim  Tebow is an ex-football player. He knows a thing or two about concussions..........Rich Hill shows Tebow how it's done in the Big Leagues...........But at least Tebow and Hill got their smack-down while playing the game. Jordan Montgomery got his while signing an autograph..........The Rangers are trolling the MLB. Or, at least, the umpire who ejected Beltre for messin' with the on deck circle.........Oh, Nick Castellanos. You are now one of The E-mortals............Ben Zobrist is on the robot umpire bandwagon. At least until his next game when the umps give him some undeserved calls at the plate. Which is the kind of thing that happens to every player in cycles...........


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Jordan Serena Destiny Watch

Serena had only one appearance since last Wednesday. That was Friday when he went 0 for 3 with 3 K's............

That Jahmai Jones, kid, though...watch out for him. 15 game hitting streak. And he has a slash line of .330/.375/.485 with High A 66ers..........

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