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WeekEnd HaloLinks: Down to the last 2 weeks

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This week was Adam Kennedy. Who noticed?

Kennedy jumps over Hatteberg

The 2018 season officially came to an end on October 28th. The very first team to have pitchers and catchers report in 2019 will be the Oakland A’s, with a date of February 10th. Between those two dates are 105 days. As of today, we are at Day 90.

All this to show that Bryce Harper and Manny Machado have burned through 86% of the offseason without making up their minds. Even if they both sign today, it leaves guys such as Josh Harrison with only 14% of the negotiating season to get teams to spin up and engage in negotiations and compete for services. What media outlet will be the first to blame Team HarpChado for costing their union peers, guys like Harrison, real money? My prediction: not a single one of them.

Back to the Stirrups Grand Promotional Overhaul Plan

IDEA #2, MONDAYS: As I stated yesterday, a fundamental tenet of my plan is to have a regular cadence upon which the fan base can understand and plan around, without having to pore over web pages all the time. So yesterday was First Fridays!, which claimed the first Friday home game of the month for one special trinket giveaway concept. That was to catch up with an idea that the Angels actually did roll out last year but do not appear to be repeating.

As an outline (without diving deep into each at this time), my cadence would be to keep the MLB tradition of Family Day on Sundays, and add Appreciation Night on Mondays, Tech Tuesdays, World Day Wednesdays. Monday through Wednesday tend to be lower attendance games and something consistent for those, with something consistent AND cool in the mix, can create a nice tradition around early week night games.

Wednesdays and Thursdays are more difficult, since those (along with Sunday late afternoons) tend to be the travel days for going back out onto the road (unless the first stop is just a couple of hours away). I’ll get to Wednesdays and Thursdays later. Let’s start with Appreciation Monday.

This is a promo, not a giveaway. There are 8 Monday home games this season, all of which are 7:07 PM start times. 8 is a nice number. It lines up perfectly with (1) police officers, (2) fire & rescue, (3) military, (4) public education, (5) emergency medical, (6) disaster relief, (7) volunteer service organizations, and (8) individual community heroes. Each night would focus on celebrating each service. A pre-game honoree, ceremonial first pitch, 7th-inning stretch event, jumbotron recognitions, and a super-steep group ticket/meal package discounts (ie. your military discount grants you up to 4 package tickets for upper deck seating plus food 7 beverage for $10 each or something). Mondays are Appreciation Night.

-HaloLinks:


A Little Bit Of Angels News

Lots of Ohtani coverage at the Honda Center. We lead with Shohei and company arriving.....Shohei pre-game.....Shohei hanging in the clubhouse.....Shohei watching warmups.....Shohei announcing opening lineups..........Shohei in his Ducks/Halos jersey mashup during the ceremonial puck drop............Shohei autographing his mashup jersey for charity....And Shohei reminding Arte that he wants to play in the World Series..........

Oh, hell to the YES. Except for the fact that Mike’s WAR remains stalled each winter, looking at his stats pages makes for jaw-dropping Trout porn. That factoid #5, about career OPS+, let me save you the clickage. Mike’s career OPS+ starting with his 2011 season would be:

Trout-Career-OPS-Plus

To place that into historical context, here in the MLB career leaderboard..........

(Note: The reason that Trout is currently 9th on the all-time career OPS+ list, and not 8th, is because of Barry Bonds. Before his PEDs era, Barry Bonds was at a career OPS+ of 163 (from 1986 through 1999). His career AFTER he started to juice, beginning in 2000 at the otherwise declining athletic age of 35, Bonds had an OPS+ of 221 (from 2000 through 2007). That 8-year span of OPS+ is the equal of Babe Ruth from 1920 through 1927, when Ruth was 25 to 32 years of age. This means that Barry Bonds, from the age of 35 through the age of 42, was the equal of none other than Babe Ruth himself, but Babe Ruth required his athletic prime to equal Bonds. That’s how Bonds ends up with that overall career total OPS+ of 182. But, yeah sure, there are still those who believe that it was all about MLB expansion, and new stadiums, and that steroids don’t improve batting.)..........

But let’s get back to Mike. Bill James explains that Trout is already the 6th-most likely HoF player active in all of MLB. That means that there are only 5 other active players who have entire careers worth of work product that surpasses what Trout has done already. Mike Trout is 27 years old, having only just walked through the door into his prime years. To put that into context, the AVERAGE current age of the last 3 Rookies of the Year in both Leagues is just a hair under 24.............

The Angels are losing one of their minor league educators to the Marlins..........

Of all these top-drawing MLB teams, my guess is that Arte keeps the Angels as the best value by a wide margin. Notice also that three of those top 6 play in 3 of the 4 oldest stadiums in MLB. Think about that for a while.........

If Matt Harvey is “fixable”, this guy might have the “fix”..........


Everywhere In Baseball

Well, now, this is just brilliant. Here, in 2018, MLBPA boss Tony Clark is just now realizing that if he does not align his membership and negotiators in time to properly strategize that they might negotiate the 2016 Collective Bargaining Agreement, the union will be in a very shitty economic position versus ownership starting in the 2017 off-season. That’s leadership personified, right there, people...........

In yet another move of extraordinary greed and aggression, MLB is officially lobbying Arizona State Legislators to pass a bill circumventing a publicly enacted ballot measure to guarantee minimum wages to all employees. MLB wants the Minor League invitees to Cactus League camps to continue showing up as volunteers for an entire month. Which will probably save each franchise about the same amount of money as is spent on owners meals during the season. Seriously, MLB wants their Minor League prospects to be categorized as equivalent to neighborhood teenagers babysitting for parents who are on date night. That really is the AZ statute exemption MLB is trying to invoke..........

That 10-day DL thing? Not so good. MLB looking to move it back to 15 days. Hey, it saves money, too!..........

How do Barry Bonds and Roger Clemens get voted into the Hall of Fame? By riding the coattails of Alex Rodriguez and David Ortiz, of course. I chuckle, because the logical fallacy made by the author is to assume that voters will be logically consistent. This has happened exactly never times.........

Just putting this out there. Yours Truly did NOT fail to vote for Lance Berkman. Unlike the vast majority of BBWAA HoF voters. Berkman’s name was on only 5 of the 425 ballots cast...........

We can’t solve this MLB-Cuba thing as long as the federal government remain in shut down...........

R.I.P. former MLB umpire Jim McKean, a man not older enough than I am now..........

A good thing about being a media volunteer who does this as a hobby, is that when the media world goes into head-hunting mode it’s not such a threat to my happiness..........


Hot Stove

The Dodgers pulled the trigger on that rumor, nabbing A.J. Pollock for their outfield on a 4-year, $60 million deal. If I were Joc Pederson, I would keep my bags packed............

In an article that begins with the premise that Harper and Machado have already earned and are deserving of an 8, 10 or even 12-year contract, making the case that the San Diego Padres should sign both of them is not so mind-boggling..........

You recall those tales of the Angels being “in” on this somebody and then that somebody, only to keep losing out? And you know how wondered just how “in” they really were? Well, in at least the case of Yasmani Grandal, not so “in” at all..........

Trader Jerry has itchy fingers again. He signed Hunter Strickland to take over the role of Edwin Diaz..........

And in another move as we enter the pots-and-pans phase of 2018-2019 Free Agency, the Cubs also added a reliever: Brad Brach..........


The Duffle Bag

When sports franchise social media maven is not very socially aware............The Salt Lake Bees are hiring. It’s inside sales. maybe you can do that from home? (jk. person-to-person meetings an game day events in stadium are part of the gig.)..........Oh, swell. MLB - via their own media outlet MLB.com - is encouraging an upcoming season of chippy baseball..........But if you watch MLB on any video device manufactured by Panasonic, that’s OK. You won’t get to see any of that chippiness, as MLB.TV just pulled the plug on you..........Tee hee hee! Mallex Smith has moved from the Tampa Bay Rays to the Seattle Mariners. In his first presser he was asked what he looks forward to the most? “People in the stands!” he says. Somebody needs to inform young Mallex that the Mariners have announced to the people who would normally come and sit in the stands that they are in full tank mode, and few of those people are expected to keep showing up for the next few years...........