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WeekEnd HaloLinks: 11 More Shopping Days Til Christmas

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Billy Eppler might be waiting for those after-Christmas sales. Again.

Philadelphia Phillies v Colorado Rockies Photo by Matthew Stockman/Getty Images

(For those wondering, this week’s Links cover photos were of those 2018 guys who will no longer be playing under the Halo.)

Well, that’s a complete wrap. Back to the silence of Anaheim. I would disagree with this title about “unfinished business”, since there was no material “business” started in the first place. Just a lot of chatter over morning coffee, which ran into lunch, which lasted until dinner, and then broke for the evening. Repeat times 4.

We hear that the Angels are engaged, and have multiple offers on various tables, and are ready to execute. But is this like being “in on Eovaldi, where being “in” was a courtesy and maybe we were never anywhere close? I mean, I can send over to Scott Boras’ agency a contract offer to Bryce Harper for a 10-year, 30 dollar personal services contract and claim that I am “in” on Harper, with “an offer on the table”. Probably forever, since it wouldn’t warrant even a reply on its way to his trash can.

So I put more emphasis on Eppler realizing that a lot of what he thought was going to get done was based on old economics, and he found out quickly enough that his trade offers were unrealistic. Yeah, he will focus on Free Agents again. The top of the market is signing up elsewhere, so the average values are falling into his price range. Additionally, he can exploit the current phenomenon of capital flowing to youth and away from +30 FA’s, resulting in a bargain bin come January/February. Even more affordable.

And who knows? Maybe he gets some players and picks the right ones, those who have an uptick in their career arc. We are long overdue for that kind of luck.

Have a great few days with these Closing-In-On-Christmas-HaloLinks:


A Little Bit Of Angels News

(h/t reddit) According to his agent Scott Boras, Yasei Kikuchi might be following Shohei Ohtani’s lead, wishing to stick to the West Coast. Once again, we made the short list!............

Back home, Shohei Ohtani won something known as The Mainichi Sports Grand Prix Award of the Year. The award is cash, and 2,000 servings of sushi. Now, I am not a fan of sushi, but I know enough that it is supposed to be fresh. Shohei had better round up 100 of his closest friends like, today, and then use that award money to pay for a good sushi chef...........

Billy Eppler passed on the MLB rounds of the Rule 5 Draft. The Halos neither lost anyone, nor gained anyone. And then the Minor League Rule 5 Draft happened. Plucked out of our lower leves and now departed are (R1) SS Julio Garcia taken by Brewers, (R2) SS Alberto Tiunfel taken by the Cardinals, (R3) C Mitch Ghelfi taken by the Mets and then SS Riley Unroe taken by the Braves. Suffice to day that it turns out we had SS depth in our pipeline that other MLB teams found desirable...........Incoming is a single player, RHP Matt Esparza taken from the Cleveland organization in Round 1. Esparza was once rising fast with the Indians farm system. Googling around I found one not too unqualified reference that suggested he was turning into a Top 15 quality pick. He had some kind of injury bug that delayed him, but came out of rehab strong.....He has (had?) a huge following at our sister site, Let’s Go Tribe. He doesn’t fit the Eppler mold of high velo, topping out at 93mph on his fastball, but he expects that his arm strength will grow over time. meanwhile, he is nasty with his curve...........

With the Rule 5 Draft complete, and Eppler having a chance to see what’s left in the Minor League system, LHP Conor Lilis-White was sent off to the Cubs to complete the Tommy La Stella deal. Lilis-White was lining up to be a decent near-term bullpen prospect.........


Everywhere In Baseball

JeffJoiner hops in with a Link contribution. ESPN did an expose on the food you ingest at any of the MLB ballparks. Angels Stadium ain’t perfect. But on a scale of 1.12% to 92%, it comes in 30th out of 107 with a score of 19.4%. Some bugs once, and some hand washing discipline. I spent 10 years in the restaurant biz, these are not good, but low-level. To compare to the real world, use this site to poke around at the food establishments nearby the stadium. Like, for example, the Karl Strauss Brewing Company right across Orangewood south of the stadium. See the April 12th report. And keep in mind that your own kitchen would most likely fail these inspectors and these standards, too.............

Kyler Murray’s Heisman win gifts him a serious paycheck, pretty much immediately, should he enter the NFL. Potentially, it’s a better deal than he will get over his carer with the penny-pinching Oakland A’s, especially all those farm system and arb years between now and when he is about 27. But if he chooses football, one has to deduct from his career income that bonus money he got when he signed with the A’s...........

I am stunned to learn that a consulting firm hired by the group in Montreal seeking a return of MLB to that city, found that such a return would shit gold in the streets...........

The Harold Baines HoF backlash may be winding down, but as it does it just gets dumber and dumber. Yesterday it was Tony La Russa making a jackass of himself. Today it’s some of Baines’ peers.....And the push back on these peers is all too easy..........

Ex-Oakland-catcher-turned-Free-Agent Bruce Maxwell has not signed with anybody yet. Now, that should not come as a great surprise since there are still hoards of Free Agents who have yet to sign. Maxwell, however, is a polarizing force who comes with multiple layers of baggage of his own making. Unsatisfied that he is taking as long to find a home as the silly Manny Machados and Bryce Harpers of the world, Maxwell has fired his agent. As you can read for yourself in the link, at least on insider believes that Maxwell may never get signed, and it has nothing to do with his gun assault and jail time. It has to do with his kneeling. Welcome to the 21st Century!.........


Hot Stove

The Dodgers are looking to dump Yasiel Puig, which would open up right field for Bryce Harper. Fun fact: if you take their respective total career bWAR, divide it by their total career PA’s, and then multiply that out by 500, Puig’s average bWAR per full season is 3.36. Bryce “$300 million” Harper is at 3.46. Go Dodgers!...........

Boras and Harper’s expectations are very very high, as we expected all along. They turned down a 10-year, $284 million offer from the Nats at the end of the season. That’s not good enough? A $16 million home town discount to stick with what he knows, on a competitive team, that is making deals to improve now, and for which would amount to only 5% off? And they said no?? Yikes......So now we know why so many teams are coming out of the closet and fueling rumors about disinterest in those kinds of terms (locals included?). Boras and Co. must be expecting well NORTH of 10x300, which would expose the Nats offer as too steep of a discount..........

Carlos Santana has left the AL West, and Edwin Encarnacion has arrived. These players were swapped in a three-team deal between the Mariners, Indians and Rays........Jerry Dipoto had to complete the transaction from a hospital bed......I won’t make any jokes here, because Dipoto was sent to the hospital with what turns out to be blood clots in his lungs. Now, I’m no doctor but I do recall human physiology. The first place that freshly oxygenated blood goes after it leaves the lungs is back through the heart and directly to the brain. Neither of those two organs are good repositories for floating blood clots..........

Relievers are now on the auction block, and selling fast......Juerys Familia to the Mets for 3 years, $30 million.....Joe Kelly to the Dodgers for 3 years, $25 million.....So Craig Kimbrel is inspired. He wants 6 years, and he wants $100 million. That’s got ‘collusion’ whining written all over it.........

ESPN still thinking this is 1975, and the MLB General Managers all assemble in December for the specific purpose of doing all their business in 3 short days worth of easy news reporting...........


The Duffle Bag

I wonder if Brian Cashman has ever seen a Star Wars movie? Those Death Star thingies seem formidable on paper, but they always get easily taken out by a handful of kids............A bobblehead campaign I could totally get behind!............