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TuesdoLinks: Eppler Kancels Kinsler

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The Red Sox purchase Ian Kinsler to step in for the missing Dustin Pedroia. Ain’t that the most Boston thing, evah?

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MLB: Chicago White Sox at Los Angeles Angels Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

Ian Kinsler can now stop wasting Mike Trout. Clearly Billy Eppler sees that he has within his grasp the infield replacements he needs to terminate his 1-year rental of Kinsler, and he swaps Kinsler over to Boston in exchange for a pair of Bullpen Maybes. Since every bullpen dude is a Maybe until they prove to be that fleeting Bullpen Absolutely, this is a cool deal. It’s the kind of thing that would have been great back in December, but we didn’t have any vision on plugging that 2B hole. So the Kinsler trade was a decent shot. 2.0 fWAR (2.5 bWAR) is kind of underwhelming.

But now we do have that vision. We have David Fletcher in hand, and Matt Thais and Taylor Ward nearing the end of the pipeline. And - don’t forget! - those guys are going to be pushing Kaleb Cowart and Zach Cozart. Those guys might not be lighting it up but they do have value.

Therefore, the accounting here is that we have seen Eppler go from a major negative at 2B and 3B at the end of 2017, to a youth-infused plus stream of infield offense and defense to kick off 2019, all at the cost of swapping Wilkel Hernandez and Troy Montgomery (who went to Detroit for Kinsler) for Williams Jerez and Ty Buttrey (coming back from Boston for Kinsler)....AND...Eppler now has some improved flexibility for selling off Blake Parker or Cam Bedrosian (or the aforementioned Kaleb Cowart) for more prospect boosting. It’s kind of like Eppler is now playing with 14 tiles in his Scrabble rack.

It seems like a fun time to watch our team grow. It’s not like where we end up come October was going to be different either way. So let’s look forward to the funshine. Except for that whole Luis Valbuena-now-plays-every-day risk. And that problem of getting back prospects from one of the worst farm systems in Baseball.

Have some Welcome-To-Camp-Future-HaloLinks:


A Little Bit Of Shohei Ohtani News

Shohei Ohtani is the Poster Child for how Japanese Baseball is losing their youth to soccer?. Specifically, the Ohtani reference is that kids in Japan are not aspiring to emulate Shohei as their Hero. That smells to me as though Japan is failing to market Shohei. I swear I have heard something like that before. Methinks that will change once Ohtani gets back into his two-way groove

Right now, however, I’d be happy to see him in a one-way groove. He is .203/.266/.441 for the month of July.)...........And that mediocrity is having an impact on his trading card values...........

A Little Bit Of Mike Trout News

It’s Mike Trout Porn time again. Except that this week it’s pretty much the same porn as I gave you already yesterday..........

A Little Bit Of Angels News

David Fletcher, local boy making good..........

Francisco Arcia, blowing the minds of those sitting in the LAA dugout. Mine, too, FWIW.........

Jo Adell is coming. He is now on the squad that will soon be The Team With No Name...........Jeremiah Jackson is coming, too. Much further behind Adell, but still..........Oh, and Michael Hermosillo continues to do better out of Salt Lake, but with Kole Calhoun raking again, he can keep doing well there for the time being..........

Victor’s son is also doing pretty well...........

And that Patrick Sandoval we got for Martin Maldonado? He had his first appearance for us, out with the IE 66’ers. Did pretty damned well..........And that would be Patrick Sandoval, Orange County native..........


Everywhere In Baseball

Because chicks dig the long ball, the people who pick the Player Of The Week must be chicks. How else to explain Jonathan Schoop getting tabbed? Sure, he led the AL with 5 home runs (tied with Khris Davis, actually). But when you add up everything else Schoop had to do over the week his total body of work was, well, chicks don’t care about the TOTAL body. Just the long balls...........

When is it the proper time to surrender, and just leave a game because the outcome is statistically well understood? Answer: NEVER DAGNABIT! It’s live baseball and the sights and sounds and smells and tastes and textures are all still valid. Something cool can happen with every pitch, outcome be damned. And the experience will stop existing altogether come November, when we are all sorry for it. Except when you are down by 7 runs, and there is only just 1 out in the top of the first. Then, yeah, go ahead and get out of the blistering heat. You ain’t gonna miss much...........

Social Media is taking over our lives. We probably all agree that this is a very bad thing but, like the weather, nobody is going to do anything about it......Jon Lester is warning young players to scrub their SM histories. Too late, Jon. The Internet never forgets......But the REAL problem is how easy it is for things to go completely sideways. This, IMHO, is a problem less with the composer and more with the readership. As the web of interconnectedness gets more and more tangled and draws us closer together, and when we mix that with the easy toxicity of the reader imposing their own, once-distant, POV and their own voice upon what was composed, things simply explode all too easy. Instead of creating discourse, we are creating discontent. And everything is a hard line in the sand, with the earth scorched on all sides..........But here we are. People are discussing what the appropriate punishment should be for being young and stupid at the same time. Other people are espousing some never-get-over-it public shaming............

Baseball stadium groundskeepers are unsung heroes. Unless they work for the Angels, and it starts to rain, which is when I unsing them and mock them mercilessly for being so bad at a job that they cannot train for properly in the SoCal sunshine. It has happened, and more than once. Anyway, imagine how unsung are the heroes in Minor League ballparks!..........

It was years ago that I used to argue this, with the (even) older establishment of HH’ers. back then the accepted wisdom from the statistical fan POV was that a pro ballplayer was complete upon arrival to MLB, and there was little or nothing that coaches actually did to instruct the players. Those guys are long gone now and I am still around. So I cannot slap them upside the head with how wrong they were. All I can do is tell you readers of this modern era that I am right...........

Now that this year’s HoF is behind us, what about next year?...........

Wait a second, here. Dodger Stadium, located in sunny Southern California, loses power only to the overhead field lights. Everything else seems to be working fine. Scoreboards, video boards, concessions, emergency exit lighting, etc. Only the field lights. While it’s still broad daylight. So the game at hand comes to a halt?. Call me crazy, but I might have considered letting the game go on to see if an official game could be had before dusk (which would have been close) or they get the lights restarted in 15 minutes or so (which is what happened)..........

ARod, of all people, has the balls to be calling out Yu Darvish and his injury/rehab and his contract and all the lost time? And how that has to be causing issues in the Cubs clubhouse? This is the same ARod who carried a $28 million per year contract back in 2013 who got hurt, and caused a major clubhouse distraction by going into battle via his own doctor versus the MFY, and who then was suspended altogether and missed the entire 2014 season. And who came back and had one Ian Kinsler year, and then one year of utter abandonment leading to obvious retirement. You go, Alex...........

Today is Trade Deadline Day.....Are the Nationals trying to be buyers?....Are they sellers?....Or are they just screwed?.....Or is the news of dangling Bryce Harper just a big tease?.....One thing is certain, players are flying all over the place right now. I can’t keep up, but a few things are worth mentioning. Such as the Astros determining that it was less acceptable to keep a closer who yells at his manager than it is to get a closer who is under a major investigation for domestic violence..........In just a few hours, MLB teams will be relegated to trying to work player deals through the waiver wire. One team, the Nationals, appears to be targeting this waiver wire system as their strategic advantage. Knuckleheads. Anyway, let’s go out with a bang. TheSportingNews wraps it all up for us.....Here are the factoids about The Deadline.....Here is why franchises care......Here is what it all looks like to the players.....And here is the tracker of all that has gone on and is going on..........


The Duffle Bag

Remember, everybody, The Onion is satire............Which should help you realize that, no Willson Contreras did NOT actually throw a baseball into outer space..........The Oakland A’s announce the invention of...um...season tickets?..........UniWatch has some good stuff for us today: a guess-the-ballpark game.....Then, two American Legion teams during a rain delay, playing tic-tac-toe.....Then, is this image simply because the Chicago Tribune wants to go out of their way to make trouble? After all, it isn’t real. Somebody had to decide NOT to use the real one and pay somebody to fabricate this one.....Finally, if this is true, it might be the ultimate Korean troll job on MLB.............From reddit,.....a reddit joke..........Fernando Rodney in one of his lesser moments..........