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MondoLinks: Impaled by Hope

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39 Days until Pitchers and Catchers report!

MLB: SEP 27 Angels at White Sox Photo by Quinn Harris/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Let’s face it. With about 40% of the ballots accounted for and Vlad Guerrero on 94.1% of them, he is a pretty good bet to be inducted. Joe Posnanski brings the smile back to all of us Vladdie fans with his reminiscing on how “impossibly wonderful’ was Guerrero the player......Tim Raines will be happy for Vlad, and happier still if Vlad goes in as an Expo. We will all know about his candidacy on January 24th, which is just over two weeks away now. His cap news may take a teensy bit longer.

While we wait for the happy day, grab yourself some Monday-Morning-Rainy-Day-Offseason-Links:


A Little Bit of Angels News

Spring Training tickets are now on sale.........

Shohei Ohtani has his sights set on the ultimate definition of success: a World Series title...........

In case it’s not already apparent, Billy Eppler has created a defensive juggernaut team that should be very good............

Kevin Jimenez, an usher at Angel Stadium, must have been working the motocross weekend and has come away notably impressed with the new video boards............


Everywhere In Baseball

Ah, it gets even better. Derek Jeter is already paying himself $5 million to run the Marlins. And we already know that he is counting on participating in the coming $50 million per-franchise bonus when MLB sells BAMtech to Disney. Not to mention the natural equity that arrives by the wheelbarrow via ownership in an MLB franchise. So there is little sense in paying out a large payroll along the way when there are $9 million in bonuses he can pay to himself for gutting the roster.........

Every year, there are always a few. Here we are with a major backlog of legit Hall of Fame candidates that the BBWAA voters need to sort out, even with valid careers being overlooked by not having enough leeway on the ballot (10 selection limit). And the process suffers the foolishness of people like Mark Purdy. Purdy couldn’t even see fit to consider a Chipper Jones HoF worthy, the one guy on the ballot who should be a slam dunk unanimous choice. All Purdy gave us was Vlad Guerrero, Trevor Hoffman, and Omar Vizquel(!)...........Tracker Ryan Thibodaux gives us a fascinating tidbit: to date every single ballot that includes only 3 choices or less includes the choice of Omar Vizquel, one of the weakest of candidates worth considering...........

Vote for Sammy Sosa because, well, he was ‘famous’. And the place is called the Hall of ‘Fame’, after all. Had the author bothered to ask, I might have pointed out to him the difference between being famous, and being infamous...........

I am still confused as to why ESPN thinks that what Buster Olney thinks is worth my money. Olney is giving us his opinion on the Top 10 ballplayers at each position (this one is 2B), which is a great way to spend a Winter. But it’s all Insider stuff. Because, you know, Disney is on the brink of bankruptcy or something............


Hot Stove

The Padres are doing their part to keep the stove watchers awake. Over the weekend they traded Yangervis Solarte to the Blue Jays in exchange for OF Edward Olivares and RHP Jared Carkuff........They are also the favored to bring to SoCal a playmate for Shohei Ohtani. They are considered the favorites to sign reliever Kazuhisa Makita............

The Giants took Jose Valdez off the market, removing any temptation Eppler might have been feeling. And aren’t we all better off for it?..........

Sam Miller shows his LAA roots. In this interview, he makes two notable statements. First, he predicts that [he doubts] “...anybody gets a better deal on a high-profile free agent next winter than the Angels did getting Zack Cozart out of a quiet market this winter.” That’s saying something, because next off-season we will have a much better Free Agent class and still have the same CBA people are using as the cause for slow activity now. And, second, he predicts that Eppler will be the one who signs Yu Darvish..........

The Dodgers would like to trade away Yasiel Puig. But it is proving to be difficult. Puig comes with baggage, but the Dodgers price Puig as a star with heavy upside. But that baggage, man............

Lorenzo Cain might be closing in on a new home. The Brewers and Rangers are sniffing around............


The Duffle Bag

Rafael Palmiero, still 53 and getting older, is ‘proving’ his comeback by clocking 50mph soft-toss in a cage. I could do that.........Some guy makes a portrait of Jose Altuve out of Legos. But what the hell? He painted the pieces to match? That’s like solving a Rubix Cube by taking it apart..........Instead, Lego guy needs to be more like this guy, who builds amazing stadium models..........

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