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HumpLinks: Mach-Ado About Cashing (In)

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Manny makes the moola while Bryce & Boras still beg for bucks.

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Los Angeles Dodgers v Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim Photo by Lisa Blumenfeld/Getty Images

Shoe #1 just dropped. The Internet went bonkers as Manny Machado was landed by the San Diego Padres. That ranks right up there with the Angels landing Shohei Ohtani, or the Angels landing Albert Pujols. Or the Angels landing Vlad Guerrero.

I see it as a do-over for the Eric Hosmer swing and miss last winter. Machado has his faults, but failing to be a top-level MLB talent isn’t one of them. It’s still baseball. It’s still a game of fail. So there will still be moments where haters will throw some ignorant mockery. It’s why they built Twitter. But over the long haul we aren’t going to see a 1.4 bWAR out of this guy any time soon. Enjoy it Pads fans. Nice ballpark that will showcase one of the finest left side of an infield in a year or two, and maybe playoff excitement by 2023.

Now we wait for shoe #2.

But before that happens, Immerse yourself in Camp-Tempe-HaloLinks:


A Little Bit Of Angels News

The Angels nabbed a major prospect out of the international pool yesterday. You could go here and learn about Arol Vera, but that costs money. Instead, you can see Lord Jessica’s post here where there is video, and join the conversation. Either we are working to corner the global market for shortstops, or Vera is going to end up that 3B slugger I have pined for since 2004...........

Manny Machado is the big news now. Bryce Harper will be the big news in a few days. But fear not, Angels fans, Mike Trout is still Boss. And it ain’t close............So, Mike is gonna get paid. Arte tells us that they have not started talking to Team Trout on any new deal. But this guys says that Arte has already started talking to team Trout............

So Arte is going to need more TV money. It’s confirmed. He wants to buy more TV.............

I feel pretty strong that, among all owners, Arte is one of the good guys. I’m hard pressed to find an owner or ownership group that comes across as more pro-player and more concerned about the health of his franchise. Mileage does vary, but his ownership ranks right up there with those of the Giants, Red Sox, and Cubs. When he tells us that his budget has players earning 50% of his revenue, and that he exceeds that budget all the time, I have to accept his word for it. I have no choice. Because as pro-player Arte might be, and as much as he chooses to recognize and honor the loyalty of his fan base, he keeps his lips tight when it comes to sharing information of any sort with the public............

The Angels wish to join the pitch-to-strikeout parade starting in 2019. I’m all for such big, bold, plans. But I would be happy to first have a prime seat on that parade float for a healthy pitching staff.............

Jo Adell taking batting practice was, um, kind of a big deal.............

Hiya, Petey!..............

Justin Upton is all about tendinitis. So he won’t be much of a show in ST as he tried to be 100% for Opening Day.............

And now a few words from Mike Trout............

Followed by a few words from Jonathan Lucroy. (I’m going to struggle all year with Lucroy. I can’t help but think that this guy is really a goalie for the Winnipeg Jets.)..........


Everywhere In Baseball

The Braves execs, having fallen into a public relations hole of their own making, refuse to put down their shovels. After screwing the taxpayers into funding a new stadium, and dumping payroll, their story all along was that this was going to empower them to roll out a powerhouse team in the near future. Instead, they are just tripping over their own tongues trying to not confess that they are happy to be in an improved profit situation, one that they intend to hang onto...............

Baseball is an industry that once thrived on tradition. Tradition, however, sure can get in the way of merchandising sales..........

So The Cardinal Way doesn’t have an off-season regimen and oversight/follow-up program?............

I don’t know if Clayton Kershaw works fast, slow, or otherwise. I do know that choosing to ignore Rob Manfred does come with some risks..........

Miguel Sano with the second crazy injury of ST 2019. This one, however, is well deserved..........

Jeff Samardzija is clearly not a fan of Front Office, analytics-driven, modern baseball............And Trevor Bauer is not a fan of Chris Sale..............

The title says it all: Finding history in a sock drawer: The story behind the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum’s latest treasure...........

More goods from The Athletic, if you have a subscription: Ken Rosenthal helps Manny Machado dig back out of that infamously bad interview last fall, just in time to convince San Diego fans that all shall be well............Nolan Arenado is the best player in the National League, and nobody but Halo fans (and Jayson Stark) has noticed..............

We need to put a mic in the bag at 1B and listen in to player chatter............

A big, long piece on analyzing the reality of the modern strike zone. The TL;DR version is: pitchers need to stay away from painting the corners, because umps don’t call those as strikes, anyway..........

The NBA is dying, you guys..........

Rest In Peace, Don Newcomb. Truly a legendary talent and trailblazer. Did you know that Newcomb was MLB’s very first Cy Young Award winner?..............


Hot Stove

HarpChado has been busted. The Chado signing with the Padres leaves the stage to HarpAlone. Manny Machado going to the Padres for $300M over 10 years is going to be fun times for Dodger fans, especially when the SD farm rises and the Dodgers drop to 3rd-best in their own division. And to any Dodger fans out there reading this, consider that the Padres are still about $70M below the luxury threshold. They can still afford Bryce Harper, too. This winter will be the one that they missed their chance to extend their window......The Machado contract is huge. On the surface the hugest ever. But then we have to realize that those contracts were a long time ago now, and adjusted for inflation, nope, Machado’s deal not so dramatic after all..............

Oh, and those anonymous statements from Padres players not wanting Machado? Not so much anymore............

The White Sox are taking this.......full stop. They have no choice but to take it. They ain’t happy about it, but they need to think about it a little bit. They are the 3rd largest TV market in the US. There are 9.5 million people in the Chicago metropolitan region. They just inked a re-up on their big TV deal. They got bold enough to get close, maybe even a little over the top if you have the right accountants. But it wasn’t enough. I recommend that they fix their pizza...........

Manny Machado to the Padres is a reflection of why Free Agency exists in the first place. The benefit to the franchises is that they get a chance to acquire a player that they can’t develop on their own, soon enough............But that doesn’t mean that FA is not broken. The system failure remains with the guys in the middle. And only a CBA reboot will create a new framework to balance the compensation between the middle class and the arb hostages.............So, shut it, Manfred. We ain’t stupid............

You’re up to bat, Phillies. You promised to be stupid this winter. Bryce Harper is right there...........

Scooter Gennett is entering his walk year, and Scooter Gennett doesn’t want to walk. Maybe it’s because he fears Free Agency, which I would get. But Gennett is the kind of guy who is a hot commodity these days. He plays 3 infield positions, has hit the stride of his prime with a 4.2 bWAR NL All-Star season, gets on base, and has a little bit of pop. What’s not to fight over?...........


The Duffle Bag

Planet Earth has some truly hellish places, capable of oozing the worst catastrophes upon mankind. Hawaii has the Kilauea volcano. LA has the La Brea Tar Pits. The middle of this country has Texas. And the east coast has Yankee Stadium, where generation after generation of Yankee fans burst forth..............Hmmm. Now we know why the Angels moved Spring Training out to Tempe. The Halos are such visionary thinkers! Always thinking of us fans..........Trevor Bauer: fun first date..........It might be fun to listen to the Oakland broadcast of LAA games this year, and hear what Coco Crisp has to say about Halo players...........Our cap. 11th. But it would be a Top 5 if it had the halo...........