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MondoLinks: Everybody Grab A Mop

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For better or worse, right?

Offenders Help To Clean Up The Capital Ahead Of The Royal Wedding Photo by Dan Kitwood/Getty Images

Our franchise has seen many of the darkest moments in MLB history. This moment is also dark, but in the same way that black holes are dark. It’s Arte Moreno’s own (shell of an) executive staff that is at the center of this darkness. It’s ugly. It’s embarrassing. It’s destructive to the people involved. It’s destructive to the franchise. It’s destructive to the public trust. And, in this case, it was deadly.

You will have your own opinions on this and you will have here and many other forums to express them. My opinion is not yet formed as I will continue to await all of the information heading our way. It might take months before all the information is out. It’s also in our future that the LAA execs will be acting in their own peculiar ways, and those ways may or may not lend more weight to my opinion forming. So I can wait.

I can say that for right now I am pissed off. It’s demoralizing, and it’s frustrating that I have no power to do anything about any of this. And to be totally honest, this is the kind of thing that makes me question my own devotion. At some point it’s no longer worth it. Maybe it hasn’t, but I would not be surprised if this thought has occurred to you. Maybe you don’t give a shit, but to stick around, glory or not, is gonna mean you will need to grab a bucket and mop.

This I do know. I wake up this morning and the franchise I have adored for 53 years has been turned into the #cesspool of MLB. I didn’t wake up and find that it was the Twins who have a drug mess that runs high up in their Front Office. I didn’t wake up and find that it was the Rockies who have a drug addict’s widow and that addict’s mom coming after the franchise with the opportunistic flame thrower of American legal windfall. I didn’t wake up and learn that it was the Giants who have become the poster example for lack of institutional control. This ain’t the Marlins or Mets or Mariners that will live with this history. Nope. You and I are now different from 29 other fan bases, and not in a good way.

We are the ones who are fans of a franchise with a Front Office infected with drug abuse, which participated in illegal acquisition/consumption/distribution of controlled drugs, which failed to have sufficient awareness to take effective and corrective pro-active action on things that impacted Tyler Skaggs and as-yet-unnamed other players, which ignored and/or hid whatever awareness they did have, and who are now left with hiring more lawyers and paralegals to suppress and deflect bad outcomes than they have been employing to operate and control their business in the first place. It’s the shits.

If MLB is lucky, we will always be different in this way. It is highly probable that MLB is actually praying for this distinction. That would be the best business outcome. The only reason that we do not (yet?) have a huge national finger of derision pointed at us already is due to the news dilution of playoff baseball. But eventually it will come.

I don’t think of any of the above as opinions. I see them as facts as we know them.

Beyond the main issue, though, I do have one opinion already formed.

These are not the Autry Angels or the Disney Angels. This was not the legacy they bequeathed to Arte Moreno. And don’t think of this mess in the terms of the Los Angeles Angels or the Anaheim Angels or the California Angels. Don’t blame LA and don’t blame The OC and don’t blame anybody else. Based on what we know at the moment there are maybe a dozen individual people who the Feds and the lawyers will tag and name for being directly at fault and legally or financially culpable for some specific thing. None of those names will be Arte Moreno. But make no mistake. These are Arte’s version of Angels. The stain that is now on our favored franchise is all him.

And because the Arte Moreno Angels are all about transparency and accountability:

Here is the link to the official MLB story posted on the official LAA public web site.

Here is the link to the official press release that is posted on the official LAA public web site.

And here is the link to Kay’s latest statement as posted on the official LAA public web site.


PLAYOFFS

Ok, so I forgot about Zack Greinke last week when I was calculating the Astros’ ALCS rotation. I would suggest that the Astros would have liked to have forgotten him, too, but their loss in Game 1 of the ALCS over the weekend had more to do with the silence of their own bats. I did end up hitting my target point of Gerrit Cole only being assured of a single game, Game 3............And that Game 3 is now coming up with the series tied 1-1. In the first game the Yankees humiliated the Astros bullpen and dominated 7-0. Last night was a very good pitcher’s duel, with the Astros walking it off 3-2 on an 11th inning Carlos Correa leadoff home run. J.A. Happ was supposed to deliver that pitch high and tight inside. It was high, alright, but it was high and right through the fat part of the plate.

That Correa home run was on the very first pitch of that bottom of the 11th inning. And it was the very first pitch after plate umpire Cory Blaser rung up Yankees catcher Gary Sanchez on a called 3rd strike that was a clean 3 inches outside. Sanchez was justifiably upset, and the broadcast crew was still trying to showcase Sanchez complaining with Blaser when he had come back out to catch when Correa disrupted the review. And THAT pitch was the one immediately after the same Cory Blaser totally gifted Sanchez on a wild flailing at a ball in the dirt where Sanchez embarrassingly missed by nearly a foot, but conned Blaser into calling foul tip. All the drama of the game came to a head in the final 3 pitches...........

The Nationals are leading the Cardinals 2-0 already, and Stephen Strasburg takes the mound tonight. Good luck with that............

What is striking to me is a simple comparison among the 4 teams left competing for the WS. Look at these four staffs: the Cardinals...the Nationals...the Astros...and now the Yankees. Did you see it? No? Go back and look again and look at the Innings Pitched column. It looks as if the Yankees haven’t even started participating in the 2019 post-season...........

You can go back and look again at the Astros and notice Gerrit Cole. He and his 15.2 innings pitched and 0.57 ERA. ($$) - What Cole is doing now is otherworldly. And that it carries through the playoffs and top-tier MLB teams is even more brilliant......Except for that Eric Sogard moment, when Sogard finally made it into the playoffs with the Tampa Bay Rays after dealing with a foot injury. In his first post-season appearance, in his first At-Bat, on the first pitch he saw, which came out of the hand of Gerit Cole, Sogard did this. It was as if Sogard stepped up and said to all of MLB “Gerrit Cole? No big deal.” Minds were officially blown.............

More pitch tipping. This might end up being the meme of the 2019 playoffs............This despite the Yankees working overtime to keep the Astros from stealing signs.............

Less juice in the playoff baseballs and the players themselves are shocked...........The Cardinals Front Office math olympiad team did their calculations and determined that, yes, the balls are unjuiced...........Well, once an actual MLB team comes out and says that, we just have to have an official proclamation from MLB that the balls in the playoffs are exactly the same as those baseball which are defined as not being to be exactly the same...........Justin Verlander knows just how bullshit that kind of statement can be, and he makes the point that messing with the baseball is messing with the outcomes............So you can imagine my surprise when I read one particular angle that points out how the Yankees, of all playoff teams, is “uniquely positioned to take advantage of a baseball that doesn’t carry as much”. Remember, this could be the first decade since the 80’s that the Yankees have not won a World Series and the first in 100 years since the Yankees did not even make an appearance. At a time when New York based MLB is fretting over a loss of fan interest in baseball, well...............

Maybe some of those Nats fans don’t deserve a WS title to enjoy. Slamming Daniel Hudson for being present at the birth of his child versus being in the bullpen for Game 1 of the ALCS? I’d bet every single complainer would be the first to call out “family comes first” in their own workplace...........Thankfully, Sean Doolittle has no reservations going guns blazing at those twitter idiots............


ANGELS

The Angels interviewed San Diego Padres hitting coach Johnny Washington for the manager spot. On the cynical side, The Korn Ferry Rule has been honored. But on the positive side, when any MLB team interviews anybody for an open manager spot it elevates that person among the MLB coaching circles. Johnny Washington is unlikely to land the job of managing the Angels, but now it is likely that Washington gets more looks as a manager and has a more likely long-time MLB coaching career.............

Zack Cozart version 1.0, known more popularly as David Freese, has announced his retirement............

UPDATE: directly from the mouth of Gerrit Cole directly, he grew up being BOTH a Yankees fan and an Angels fan. This is a change from him being known only to be a Yankee fan as a kid. The remaining question would then be which cap did he where to Angels Stadium when the Yankees came to town?...........


MANAGERIAL MUSICAL CHAIRS

Carlos Beltran is not interested in your open managerial job, Mr. owner-of-any-MLB-team-other-than-the-Mets.............

And you thought we were finally done with Dusty Baker, you silly baseball fan person, you...........But that Phillies job? It could be worse than Dusty Baker. It could be a lot worse............

And the Giants seem happy to consider Gabe Kapler. A major emphasis on the implementation of advanced statistical theories in spite of sufficient successful outcomes must be their thing............


BASEBALL

Apparently we need to install extended netting across the dugouts..............

I am unsorry that I get to enjoy Dodgers misery for a little while longer. The playoff autopsy continues.....The Dodgers Are a Monumental Playoff Failure. GThat headline alone just makes my linkage evening.....Dave Roberts, Clayton Kershaw and the vortex of Dodgers failure.....I don’t care if others think of the Kershaw playoff narrative as unfair. IMHO, that’s just fanboi emotions refusing to look at the facts of his playoff game logs......Dodgers must get their priorities in order after early October exit. Which means they need to sign Gerrit Cole, Stephen Strasburg and Anthony Rendon (or at least Josh Donaldson)..........


STUFF

Jobs! The Dodgers want a couple of stat people. My guess is that the two stat people who used to have these particular posts were responsible for bullpen utilization analysis. And the Blue Jays are looking for somebody to play video games. No, really............I don’t know how much long this irony is going to last, but if you click the link on the MLB home page that is supposed to take you to the auction of game-used gear for the Players Weekend that almost nobody even liked, the MLB auction page for that gear is in full agreement with that fan opinion............Zack Greinke is a master of few words. Succinct, direct, and wickedly lethal............