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Thor’sLinks: Angels Done Healing The Wounded

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After making the Orioles and Tigers feel like real MLB teams again, the LAA work in Anaheim is done. Time to hit the road.

MLB: Detroit Tigers at Los Angeles Angels Richard Mackson-USA TODAY Sports

Nice. Red hot Matt Thaiss was sat yesterday because the Tigers were starting a lefty. We used to hear this in Tempe, too, where Thaiss’ splits were .324/.361/.618 ad an OPS of .979 versus RHP, but .556/.600/.889 with an OPS of 1.489 versus LHP....In this regular season, his splits are .205/.262/.538 and OPS of .800 versus RHP, but .600/.667/1.200 and OPS of 1.867 versus LHP. That’s not important, though, because the LHP that the Tigers would be sending out yesterday - Daniel Norris - hadn’t won a game since May 12th. Norris had been 0-7, and the Tigers 2-12 in all those starts since then, carrying a 5.50 ERA. LAA scoring should come easy, and young Thaiss could use the rest.

Here is the sum total of that LAA scoring.

Losing 9-1, the Angels were outscored in this 7-game home stand against the two worst teams in Major League Baseball, 48 to 32, and closed it out with only 2 wins against 5 losses.

And, so, after making the Orioles and Tigers feel like real MLB teams again, the LAA work in Anaheim is done. Time to hit the road.

It’s August. We ain’t playing any games today. We are busy heading off to Cleveland where the Indians no longer have a Trevor Bauer to kick us around anymore.

So enjoy your game free day with these We’re-In-On-Everything-HaloLinks:


A Little Bit Of Angels News

Le sigh. As the Astros loaded up on contributors, they found themselves over the 40-man limit, and with a plethora of catchers. So they did Billy Eppler a solid and helped him not feel left out in that make-your-team-better program storming throughout MLB all around him. They tossed Max Stassi over the fence. Is this because Stassi has a wicked slider? No. Sorry. That would be short-sighted and impulsive. Don’t want to be be doing that. Our Master and Commander is looking for the long view, maybe 2022 or something. We’ll get together, then, dad. We’ll sure have a good time, then. No, the reason we go Stassi is because we are getting Jonathan Lucroy back at the same time, and this gives us a catching surplus of our own, allowing Eppler to make TWO moves, DFA’ing Dustin Garneau.............

Mike Trout ties the club July home run mark..............

We can tell that GM Billy Eppler was groomed by Brian Cashman. Asked about how it was that the Yankees failed to improve dramatically before the Trade Deadline, Cashman is quoted as saying: “I feel comfortable with walking away from everything that was in front of me because those weren’t real opportunities as far as my conversations were going.”..........Eppler was talking, too. “We were in on a lot of arms...and we were prepared to give like value for them...we explored those but ultimately weren’t able to match up on anything.”..............As Eppler said, a different organization valued a player differently and they went that way. In other words, pick your trade star and rejoice, because whoever it is, the Angels were in on him!.............

Eppler also dove into “the calculus” that his Front Office staff goes through to “value...control”. Now, “control” is a choice word and Eppler was not the only one to use it. Blue Jays GM Ross Atkins used it, too, and for the same reason. In the world of Major League Baseball, “control” is a financial term, meaning that the franchise has achieved some level of control over payroll costs, which is measured against a budget figure set by a franchise owner based on internal margin targets.............

Skipper Brad is not worried about the K looking at the Trade opportunities. The Angels “have plenty of ammo”...........Yeah, I know what “plenty of ammo” can mean...........

Griffin Canning may have found his mojo............

Because 2019 Mike Trout is a shitload better than even 2014 Mike Trout...........


Everywhere In Baseball

The Pirates/Reds brawl gets a much needed in-depth analysis.............

Japanese High School baseball coach has start pitcher throw 435 pitches across 9 days, including 194 pitches 3 days prior. Coach decides to sit the pitcher for the final “to prevent injury”?? Holy balls. It may already be too late for that. Whatever. Said coach has been pilloried across Japan for 2 weeks now for failing to use his best pitcher, probably costing the team the national championship............

Baby Bichette’s first MLB career home run...........

May The Onion forever reign...........

The FOX RSN carrier market keeps shrinking............


Trade Rumors Recap

(Final entry for the regular season of this section)

July 31st should not be called a ‘Trade Deadline’. More accurately, it should simply be called ‘Trade Day’. Because all the GM’s pretty much wait until this day to do all their work, as evidenced by yesterday. I am not even going to try and pollute this web page with all the deals that were made yesterday. The full summary of the bigger ones is here, but we can get into a couple of specifics.............

The big splash was Zack Greinke and millions of dollars of cash going to Houston for 4 names out of Houston’s pile of prospects. Now, those prospects represent the #’s 3, 4, 5 and 22 from the Astros’ farm. That’s pretty serious, but it gives Houston Greinke’s services through 2021......Houston also added SP Aaron Sanchez and bullpen arm Joe Biagni plus an OF prospect from the Blue Jays. And they got Marty Maldonado from the Cubs. Those cost them Derek Fisher and Tony Kemp............So Houston truly beefed up their franchise at the cost of a lot of potential, potential that was mined from their tanking head start. But while what they got is real, what they sent away was not. Derek Fisher was once highly prized, but his MLB career is not meeting expectations. Remember that the Astros are enjoying the hell out of Gerrit Cole (9 WAR over 55 starts already) and Justin Verlander (13 WAR over 62 starts already), and the price they paid for all that was Michael Feliz, Jason Martin, Colin Moran, Joe Musgrove, Daz Cameron, Franklin Perez and Jake Rogers (not counting cash and other odd names going back and forth). It’s 2019 and how many of those Houston prospects ring any kind of bell with you? Daz, maybe? The lesson here is that Houston is raking enormous talent surplus out of the mere effect of reputation. It’s possible that they just pulled off more of the same with yesterday’s haul...........

So we gotta have scorecards. Winners and Losers.............Yahoo-Sports-1...........Yahoo-Sports-2...........CBSSports............TheBigLead............SBNation..........ESPN..........SportsIllustrated...........NBCSports...........Just grading the Greinke trade...........

Looking at the Dodgers and Yankees, who did practically nothing in contrast to expectations that they would be the largest players...........The Yankees strike out, after already being in the hot seat among the locals in New York..........The Yankees totally botched everything...........What the hell are the Yankees even doing?............

A deal that did NOT happen. The Mets tried to flip Marcu Stroman over to the Yankees...........

Department of Bad Timing carries TWO new entries today. First, by TheRinger. “One year ago, the Pirates dealt Austin Meadows, Tyler Glasnow, and a promising prospect to the Rays for a starter. Here’s why we probably won’t see any similar deals before Wednesday’s deadline.”..........Second, Bob Nightengale: “Zack Greinke may remain a Diamondback the rest of his career.”..........

Trader Jerry tried to hold out, but just could not resist the temptation............


The Duffle Bag

Tanner Roarke heard the news of his fate in the most oddball way.............Thank you thank you thank you reddit! Leeroy Jenkins!!!............Jose Martinez might be having a down year by his standards, but funky handshakes still have him in the best of spirits.............Tarp Wars in Philadelphia............Clint Frazier, happy to not be traded.............But Noah Syndergaard did Clint Frazier one better............