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MondoLinks: Halos Shuffling Deck Chairs.

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Team gets swept out of Cleveland as the losing - and the roster swapping - continue.

Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim v Cleveland Indians Photo by David Maxwell/Getty Images

The crappy week is over. Completely swept out of Cleveland by Justin Bieber.

There are times when it does not pay to be playing as well the current World Series Champs.

Since winning The Battle of Los Angeles, the Angels have gone 2 and 8. They dumped to the worst team in MLB, then dumped to the new worst team in MLB, then dumped all three games to a Wild Card competitor. They lost games, they lost players, they lost their grip on .500, and they lost all sense of mojo.

49 games left in the season. 34 games away from 90 wins. 9 games out of the Wild Card with 6 other teams in the hunt, and all above them.

It’s gonna be a long 2 months.

But let’s brace ourselves for it with these Not-Yet-Time-For-E-Countdown-HaloLinks:


A Little Bit Of Angels News

Oh, goodie. Why not? Andrelton Simmons sprains his ankle again, taking batting practice, and hit the IL. Griffin Canning suffers some elbow inflammation and goes to the IL. And Felix Pena sprains his knee - no he doesn’t!, it’s a torn ACL - and he gets carried off to the IL for the rest of he season..............3 guys carted off to the IL at once, and that is calling it lucky. Luke Bard flies all the way to Cleveland, takes the mound in relief, throws 5 pitches and gets smacked by a come-back liner in the back of his elbow and is taken out - but looks to be avoiding the IL.............And Jaime Barria worked through some physical problems with this plant foot, working through it and staying in the game. It turns out to be a blister, and is avoiding the DL..............

Andrew Heaney should be back in time to take a few starts before the season is over, setting himself up for Spring Training 2020..............

So here comes Patrick Sandoval, to save the day. Sandoval will be taking a start in Cincinnati...............

Kevin Maitan showing up in the highlights again. (Remember that the kid is only 19-years old.)............

Mike Trout: Baseball’s ambassador for good.............

($$) - Billy Eppler’s yearly flopping about on the deck of the S.S. Can’t Buy A Pitcher is getting obvious to the larger world. And he is now several years into being stuck with the same hook in his mouth. Next year promises to be more of the same. “We’re going to be in the market for pitching again. We went into last winter with that same objective and some of the circumstances guided us away from some players that got bigger deals, that we didn’t chase. We opted to go a little shorter term with the deals we did do. We will still be in the market for pitching this winter”. The message being parsed between the words actually used does not install much confidence in me. And if there is one thing that has become quite apparent, it’s that this pitching staff is not one Gerritt Cole away from the playoffs............

Our Trash Panda logos..............

Dusin Garneau says goodbye. But fear not. We will be seeing him again. Garneau was picked up by the Oakland A’s and the Angels visit Oakland on September 4th............

Weekly Mike Trout Career WAR Perp Walk. Since last we poked at this update, Mike was just behind Ted Lyons/Alan Trammel (both HoF’ers) at 70.7 bWAR. Since then, he has past both of those guys, AND Johhny Mize (HoF) at 70.9 bWAR, AND Bobby Grich at 71.1 bWAR. He sits at 71.3, and is now chipping away at #89 Rafael Palmiero’s 71.9 bWAR...............


Everywhere In Baseball

Houston got off to a rather decent start with their recent acquisition of Aaron Sanchez. In his first start, Sanchez played the key opening role in a combined no-hitter for the Astros. But it’s the mariners again, who got no-hit for the second time in less than a month. Maybe these should have an asterisk on them...............

We on the outside do not spend nearly enough time in the meeting rooms of MLB franchises to understand what is going through their minds. So when it looks like Al Avila, the Detroit GM, is out of his mind it’s hard to do anything but mock the Tigers. But the other story is how teams such as the Cubs and Astros were saved by Avila from making mistakes, allowing them to succeed not by their own wisdom, but by some other team having even less wisdom in a transaction than that of their own..............

The Phillie Phanatic and the Phillies franchise are now locked in a lawsuit concerning the Phanatic’s rights to free agency. Curt Flood would be pleased............

The Astros may have beefed up their already stellar pitching staff this year in the trade market, but there is plenty of cased evidence to show that the World Series is not now pre-ordained............

Vince Velasquez is a pitcher on the Philadelphia staff. He is not an outfielder. He is not an All-Star left fielder who has received MVP votes and is working on a $106MM contract. But he IS a left fielder that you should never, ever try to run on..........

If Clint Frazier were still a prospect with service time remaining to be consumed prior to starting his arb clock, the Yankees keeping him at AAA would be drawing complaints of service time manipulation all across the land. What is going on now with Frazier should be a bookmark for future tales, because sometime teams hold them back for other reasons, too. And they don’t have to explain themselves..............

How refreshing! In this take down of baseball we read that the problem is not really with the game itself, as the changes we talk about all the time are actually barely noticeable to the observer. The REAL problem is the way the game is being presented. There are number of points made, too many to itemize here. But I will tap into a pair of points directed at game broadcasters themselves. One is the ex-player game analyst and the “back in my day” phenomenon: “It is difficult for new fans to recognize some of the most important aspects of the game without a little guidance and it should be no surprise that young people are bored by a game that they don’t understand. It seems unlikely that new fans are going to invest their time in baseball when the communicators debase the strategies and statistics and often aren’t interested enough to pay attention.”.....and the second point is accidentally emphasizing boredom versus focusing on the most critically important part of the game: “Both baseball broadcasts and baseball stadiums desperately need to update the ways they engage with new fans. First, broadcasts need to do a better job explaining to a viewer the most important battle of the entire game: that between a hitter and pitcher. This confrontation is so important that Cubs manager Joe Maddon once said that the game could easily be called “pitching.” Yet, some broadcast crews often talk over entire plate appearances while barely acknowledging that a player has come to bat.”.............

The Red Sox come with entitlements. Chris Sale is pretty pissed at the ball/strike calling of his most recent outing. These days the umpires are very easy targets and calling them out makes you look smart. But if you look at Sale’s outing, you can see that there is only 1 pitch worth worrying about (it’s the one that pissed him off) out of the 76 he threw, which is pretty good work. No matter, Sales argued that one pitch and he got his manager Alex Cora to argue and both were ejected. And afterward there is Sale, pushing media and fan buttons. And here is the irony: plate umpire Easterbrook DID have a bad game, but it was while calling the zone of Yankee pitcher Domingo German. German totally got away with murder, all at the expense of Boston hitters. I count 3 pitches inside the zone called on behalf of MFY as balls, and 5 pitches outside the zone called on behalf of MFY as strikes. 8 bad mistakes out of 97 (8%), which is bad. All while Sale was not on the mound. And where was Cora on that?............


The Duffle Bag

Because Baseball is fun! (In spite of Rob Manfred)...............And it’s supposed to be most for for the kids, not some other kid’s dad.............My guess now would be that the Rangers will have full netting when they move to their new stadium............Let the Yankee fans chant all they want. Let them get even more emotionally vested. Their disappointment come November will feel good.............LA Dodger minor leaguer, one with a modicum of success, tires of the poverty, pursues mega-million career as a male model............NFL players know which sport is all about the fun................Derek Dietrich, Eugenio Suarez and Blooper all got skills...............