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HumpLinks: No Mo’ Mike?

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The winds of rumor waft the first hint of Trout’s camp rejecting any extension talk.

Oakland Athletics v California Angels Photo by J.D. Cuban/Getty Images

Welp, here it is, folks. The winds of rumor bring to our hyper-sensitive noses the first hint that Mike Trout’s camp is not going to be signing any contact extension. This, just in time for the Phillies to figure out whether or not they really wish to commit at this time to BOTH Manny Machado AND Bryce Harper.

If this turns out to be true, and that it ends up happening that Trout moves on to the FA market, and if the result is that he does not re-sign with the Halos, we will have a few touchstones in history with which we can mark among the causes. The reluctance to sign Trout to a lifetime contract back in 2014. The anchor in Arte’s butt that is his Albatross Pujols contract burden. And even, yes, the current reluctance to follow the competitive tier of MLB franchises by spending big here in the winter of 2018-2019 to temporarily tide things over until Billy Eppler’s draft resources come of age. The takeaways there would be A: that Arte missed our chance to have Trout forever when he was asking for it...B: that Trout’s playoff dreams then suffered year over year as Arte refused to buy his way out of his mistakes...and C: as the industry pivoted into haves and have-nots, Arte & team chose to not dive deep into the FA pool of riches and keep pace.

Then again, this aroma could simply be somebody lighting their BBQ a few blocks up wind.

And on that note, Enjoy a few Throw-Myself-Off-A-Cliff-HaloLinks:


A Little Bit Of Angels News

So the sum total of all grist in the rumor mill concerning Mike Trout and any contract extension consists of one sentence, in one tweet, from one particular jackanape:

“whispers”. Somebody is “whispering”. A cynic might ask how Scott Boras might benefit from such whispers right about now?..........

Rosterbation: Billy Eppler sends minor-league infielder Daniel Ozoria to the Twins in exchange for right-hand bullpen pitcher John Curtis. Curtis, not being a minor-leaguer himself, must occupy a spot on the 40-man, which is full. So Eppler pops the guy on the bubble, Parker Bridwell, and DFA’s him. Poor Bridwell. This winter must be agony. He ends the season as a Halo, gets DFA’d, sent through waivers and picked up by the Yankees, then DFA’d by the Yankees and claimed back by the Angels. Now DFA’s by the Angels and back off to Mystery-ville once again...........

Yesterday marks a meaningful day on the LAA calendar.....It was the 70th birthday of Bobby Grich......It was the day that Vlad Guerrero chose to move to Anaheim.....And the very first Halo, Eli Grba, passed away.....

Looking at the Farm is FanGraphs. It’s nice to read about so many guys with realistic MLB chances............

Albert Pujols...not real fast............

It’s now official. Pitchers and catchers report February 12th..........

Thus, we shall start to see Spring Training previews. Beginning with those pitchers..........

Rain falls on the Southland? Turning dirt into mud? It must be time to tear up Angel Stadium............


Everywhere In Baseball

Kyler Murray update. Murray has lots of factors to figure out, pretty much all of them upside to Murray. (Cool thing to note in that article, about how a judge ruled an MLB contract to be indentured servitude.)...........Deion Sanders, who is more qualified than almost anybody on this matter, recommends baseball..........Pay no attention to the smallest of small numbers...........And now poor MLB owners, locked in a bidding war with the NFL............Imagine trying to be Billy Beane and selling Kyler on riding buses for the A’s instead of playing on Monday Night Football..........I get it that losing out on a 9th overall pick can dent a franchise for moment, but in spite of this article, losing out on one player doesn’t mean anything to a major sport overall. If Murray pursues an NFL career, it won’t mean a thing to us fans once Ronald Acuna and Baby Vlad are causing havoc on the field...........

My absolute WTF??? moment of the entire day. Ex-MLB pitcher, New York Yankees closer, and Texas Rangers Hall of Famer, John Wetteland has been accused of sexually assaulting a relative over a 2-year period, beginning when that relative was a 4-year old child.”..........

“Back in my day, when I had to deliver groceries when I wasn’t playing pro ball, we knew how to stick it out when things got tough. None of this namby-pamby pitch count crap...”..........

Reminder: next week is Hall of Fame inductee announcements..........The current ballot scorecard as tracked by the ever-so-vigilant Ryan Thibodeax...........

Bob Costas is officially done with NBC. I wonder how much long he will keep up his broadcasting career. Say what you will, but Costas is a damned sight superior to Joe Buck.............This is an interesting twist. A talented sports journalist moves from broadcast and online media to...to...a newspaper? Somebody has not gotten the memo from history..........

R.I.P. Carol Channing............


Hot Stove

The Phillies really want Harper or Machado, but not both..........

Bartolo Colon is that old guy clogging up all the opportunities for the youngsters Free Agents. You know, the ones still in their late 30’s...........

Could you imagine the Padres getting Corey Kluber instead of the Dodgers??...........Oh, wait, the Padres. Yeah, possibly the Manny Machado “mystery team”?............

Very fair point: Manny Machado and Bryce Harper are totally hosing a large portion of the other MLBPA members trying to get time and attention to secure a new employment contract..........

Another important point: when players do sign, they are not signing in a vacuum. Like Derek Holland, they are choosing from multiple offers that are coming from teams which don’t know what the others are bidding. Unless somebody can prove collusion, that’s a sign a free market at work...........


The Duffle Bag

You gotta love this. A modern day student of modern day batting swing mechanics is so locked up in the modern day formula that he actually disses Babe Ruth and Lou Gehrig. Yeah, with swings like that those two will never make it. Not against Big League pitching...........BJ turned Melvin has turned back to BJ...........Job Postings! Software Development for the Cubs.....And FanGraphs is looking for contributors (Rahul is not keeping busy enough...)..........