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HumpLinks: Spring, Part Deux

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Angels v Rangers X

Hoohah! The astronomical clock hath struck Spring. So this means that Ohtani gets to start all over again, right?

Ok. Maybe not. We settle for Winter being officially over. We made it.

As a reward, we do these No-Do-Over-Spring-Training-Links:


A Little Bit of Angels News

Well, by now all of the baseball world has learned that Mike Trout has yet to strike out this off-season. So Trout will probably strike out today just to shut everybody up. But the point for you and me is that Trout is demonstrating that he can not strike out if he doesn’t want to. So take that, MLB pitchers everywhere.............

Trout is also, you know, pretty damned fast on the base paths.............

But let’s just cut right to the Trout Porn for the week. How about a measure of his total awesomeness that is so awesome that it is named for the awesome Trout himself?..........

I you are going to fetch the love of a national media source, Sports Illustrated is possibly the last one you want to win. They have this rather unfortunate curse when it comes to their cover subjects............

But the SI attention seems to be a lot more positive that the attention from Baseball Prospectus..........

Zack Cozart stacks up much better against the rest of the MLB 3B stock than Marty Maldonado did against the catchers..........

Andrew Heaney is DL destined, probably....but Heaney is not feeling so bad with his inflamed elbow. Which worries me..............

Vegas sports books have spoken. Angels odds off making the playoffs? +110/-130. So that would be “Bet $100 for the Angels to make the playoffs and if you are right you get paid $210. Or bet $130 for the Angels to NOT make the playoffs and if you are right you get paid $230.”............

Hey, let’s remind ourselves one more time about how it is 2018, AND THE ANGELS NO LONGER ARE CARRYING ANY C.J. WILSON OR JOSH HAMILTON DEAD MONEY ON THEIR BOOKS! That’s the best list to not be a part of............

We have some Tempe scouting tweets collected for you to wiz through............Maybe HH broke a true story after all. Jahmai Jones has been spotted working out at 2B in Tempe..............And Jones is impressive at the plate, too...........And Livan Soto looks glove slick sick...............On the other hand, Rahul is less impressed by Kevin Maitan. But there is time. And he is a big dudelet...........

Luis Rengifo. There. I wrote it. Probably won’t ever have a need to do that again...........


Everywhere In Baseball

As if the MLB rule book does not already put the persnickety rules of golf to shame, the new mound visit rule is causing a whole chapter of judgments all by itself. Read this interview with a crew chief. There are things still not yet figured out, and things we haven’t even known we had to worry over. Things like...going to the mound during a home run trot doesn’t decrement the counter because it doesn’t slow down the game...and...maybe an infielder not reaching the mound dirt will not count as a delaying visit. There are other fun things in the interview, too. It’s always refreshing to read the point of view of umpires..........

Know your target market, friends. Or, if you are a Latin ballplayer in Florida with a hankering or some home cooking, know your target supermarket...........

Should MLB ever be put into a spot where they would have to pay living wages for minor league players in their service, and it is certainly looking like they will NOT...EVER....there is a way to sustain the MiLB system AND not drive MLB franchises into foreclosure. All it takes is shedding one of their bottom teams into an independent (non-affiliated) existence..........

Justin Turner, Dodgers 3B who was injured Monday night, is lucky to be avoiding hand-surgery............

The Braves are gaming Ronald Acuna’s service time. We know this. We linked to it already. But surrounding that activity is the reaction of many throughout the MSM. Craig Calcaterra of NBC Sports is particularly upset. But seems to be upsetting him even more, is the fact that he cannot get the NBC readership to lap at his feet. Calcaterra wants a readersheeple. Here he was last week, and here is was yesterday. In both cases, both in the article and the comments, Craig rages “why do you people keep supporting The Man and not the players???”................

I linked yesterday to the news of MLB announcing their holiday unis. Jessica linked to the LAA-specific gear. But our well-linked expert UniWatch gives us their editorial review............


Hot Stove

Alex Cobb signs with the Orioles. Something like 4 years for $60 million............

Clay Buchholz still has signs off life. It’s yet another ever-popular one-year minor league deal with the Royals..........

To no surprise of anybody following the goings on in Surprise, Tim Lincecum will start the season on the arm, for a club that is still without a closer. Not a good look for his comeback prospects. But we know this story, do we not?............

Kris Bryant saw this off-season and has decided to become an activist. Or, maybe he just got all his information from reading the MSM reports. My suggestion as his first order of education: wait and learn from the next off-season...........

Giancarlo Stanton channeling Luke Skywalker when going up against Derek Can-Do-No-Wrong Jeter...............


The Duffle Bag

Milton Bradley is at it again. Not even jail time seems to clear his head...........(h/t UniWatch) Korean team invoking artificial rain to knock the dust out of the air in their stadium. The ‘dust’ is massive air pollution from nearby China, which is upwind.........MiLB having all the fun, again. The Flying Chanclas...........You’re not getting anything past these Tiger fans these days..........Russell Martin showcasing his athletic skills...............Lots of MLB teams will host concerts in their stadiums this year. Keep in mind that seek the lowest common denominator for season ticket holders in their Alligator polos............MiLB going Copa de la Diversion this year, which makes perfect sense with 40% of the players being Latino..........