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HumpLinks: Halos Soar, Mariners Sink

The Angels offense explodes all over the smarmy hopes of M’s fans in Anaheim. And all is right with the world for one night.

MLB: Seattle Mariners at Los Angeles Angels Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

#VoteSimba put on a show of retribution against all those Seattle fans voting for Jean Segura. 3 for 5 with 2 RBI and 1 run scored, added to some brilliant defense.

The game had lots of ups, and a few downs.....Kole Calhoun had a great night.....Shohei Ohtani did well.....Albert Pujols did even better.....And Garrett Richards exited in the 3rd inning with some new injury. Overall, the Angels spanked the M’s 9-3 and joy was had (almost) all around.

The Mariners have now lost 4 of their last 6 and maybe the tide is running back out to sea on their fairy tale.

Mike Trout suffered yet another IBB last night. Makes sense, because once again it’s the Mariners. Trout now has 17 IBB’s on the season, and 11 of those have come since the June 13th game in Seattle. 5 of these past 24 games have been against Seattle, which has launched this new strategy against Trout. And during that same time Mike has only 2 home runs and 3 doubles. So his On Base Percentage is 20 points higher than anybody, but his Slugging percentage is falling. (Trout stealing second base when up 8-3 was refreshing.)

Grab these Seattle-Shipwreck-HaloLinks:


A Little Bit Of Shohei Ohtani News

Just throwing this out there. With all the hype surrounding Ohtani taking batting practice, and since his workload is very light now, he would be great for the Home Run Derby............

A Little Bit Of Mike Trout News

Mike has an opinion! And that opinion is not in agreement with the MLB Front Office conformity enforcers. But then, we already know how poorly MLB has managed to promote Mike Trout...........

Nike knows how to promote Mikey. Even if they choose to NOT promote the Angels uniform that Mike actually wears (as the first comment points out)..............By the way, MLB, the sporting world would be flush with incredibly cool graphics like that if you were not so draconian with your video clips.............

And if MLB is not going to figure out how to promote Mike, Mike ain’t going to pass up family time to promote the MLB Home Run Derby..........

A Little Bit Of Angels News

On the very day that whatever his name was sent to SLC (Deck McGuire), and on the very day that Richards made the national media attention as a trade candidate, Garrett does his DL thing. Right now it’s called ‘forearm irritation’. It’s the Angels. Don’t say it............

Angels players tell you why you should have worked even harder to #VoteSimba..........

Jahmai Jones got a bump up to the AA BayBears. Something about striking out 50% more often than he walks must have really impressed the Halo brass. That, or they are trying to fast track Jones to line up a regular 2B in their future (Fletcher being considered the UT).............

Maybe I don’t want the MSM to ask the tough questions of LAA decision-makers after all. Because it seems like Jeff Fletcher has chatted with Mike Scioscia and discovered that Sosh loved Luis Valbuena having a hot streak around the All-Star break last year, thus it makes sense to play him a lot now because he will do that again. Naturally..............(By the way, I looked it up and that “tear” that Valbuena went on raised his BA from ,181 all the way up to .208, all by batting .250.)..........

Tyler Skaggs coming to a ballpark near you (well, me anyway) this Thursday..........

This sum up the LAA marketing just perfectly: “Fine but not amazing”..........

American League First basemen are pretty bad this year. But take heart, Halo fans. Albert Pujols is NOT the worst. Nope, he is only 4th worse. Slightly better than Luis Valbuena, wh is worse than Albert............


Everywhere In Baseball

This headline cracks me up. Oh, hell yeah. The A’s are blistering hot, and in a way that the Mike Scioscia-led Angels never accelerate up to. They have won 17 of their last 21 games and have climbed up to 5 games in front of the Halos. But “The Athletics have been baseball’s hottest team despite having an entire rotation on the disabled list” is just too much. Oakland lists 7 guys on the DL at the moment. The Angels list 13, and I haven’t heard about Garret Richards yet. And that bit about the entire starting rotation? Well, yeah, that’s been LAA for a season and a half now. The Angels don’t have that miracle hot streak, but they are still within 5 games of Oakland with twice the injuries, for twice as long through the season...........On the other hand, the LAA Replacements don’t make plays like this...........

The Rays have already started to write up their Christmas wish list for Santa. First up: a shiny new stadium.....No, they don’t know how it will be paid for, which is code for “we checked out own wallet and realize that we can’t afford to pay for the thing ourselves”......In order to to minimize the embarrassment of empty seats, the Rays are choosing to follow the lead of the Oakland A’s, and look forward to a stadium that supports far fewer fans. It doesn’t even have a full upper deck............It will feature a really groovy roof that provides no shade, and fails to understand the physics of infrared light and the greenhouse effect. But it’s Florida, so why worry about the sun?..........

Here is a list of players trying to convince me why it’s not simple to beat the shift. But I ain’t buying what they are selling. All I am hearing is “I have my one approach to an at-bat and how my swing mechanics work and that one way got me to The Show and that’s the approach I am sticking with even though I am getting exploited like a son-of-a-bitch and striking out in spades and even though it means that I cannot exploit the situation presented to me with a free gift of a base hit to an open field away from what I have trained myself to do.” Tony Gwynn would simply shit on these guys............

Is it just me, or has this season seen far more in-game managerial/coaching mistakes than ever? This week alone we have Mickey Callaway and the Mets, and then Terry Francona and the Indians..............

When Baby Vlad comes back from the MiLB DL, he will land with a promotion to AAA...........

On the opposite end of All-Star candidacy, we have the Anti-All-Star honorees..........And All-Star snubbery and snub-overreactions are still ongoing...........But replacements are already being made, and they are coming from the ‘snub list’..........

The uber rich are racing to get uber richer. The Yankees are mulling over Manny Machado, of course (over which the local media is drooling), and recently added interest in Zach Britton......And they have been in talks about Jacob DeGrom......But J.A. Happ? Now THERE is a fine target for the MFY.....The Red Sox must feel like they cannot be left out, and have added themselves to the mix over Machado..........Well, in fact, it seems like everybody wants to take a shot at Machado......Even the Phillies are interested.....My guess is that everybody just wants to make sure that the Orioles don’t move him too cheap..........For his part, Machado is getting chippy at having to talk about trade rumors every single day...........And Manny ain’t moving off of the SS position for anybody............

In non-Manny news, the Cubs are sniffing around Baltimore for Adam Jones. Maybe Mike Trout finally picks up some votes for Gold Glove? Probably not...........

UniVision is unhappy with their Gawker Media (now Gizmodo) properties. I guess the viability of managing a bunch of writers who are scorched earth, my-way-or-the-highway, spend all their time ravaging guys like me for having the balls to have fun in my part time, is not a sustainable model for justifying the expense. I make this point only in response to all the articles and readership comments they have bombed in my general direction............But in other media news, Comcast is lining up bidders for Jose and Gubi..........


The Duffle Bag

Life has changed. Just the fact that MLB announces who it shall be that is acting as Replay Official for the All-Star Game means that we are now drawn into the MLB sausage factory. You never escape the sausage factory..........Angels are the leaders. Dodgers are the followers. 6-man MLB rotations are the Eppler/Sosh pioneering legacy..........If you want to connect MLB to the next generation of fans, just get them to a damned game!..........It takes a lot of people to bring to you a baseball game. Far more than the faces and voices with whom you are familiar. Meet one such hero.........Sorry, people, but catching a ball while standing against a 4 foot high home run fence does not a hero make...........Yes, dear twitter user, Harold Baines Reynolds is a lost lugnut............Head on a swivel, everybody............