Thor’sLinks: Nats Make Cubs Fans Sick

In the shortest of shorts, we took it in the shorts. The Yankees pulled off their comeback and are still alive. It’s actually highly possible we have the 70’s all over again, with a Dodgers/Yankees World Series. And would that be a crapper? Oh well, if that happens we can turn our attention to the US Men’s team in World Cup.

Today we have another ALDS climax. The Cubs will be taking on the not-pitching-Stephen-Strasburg-Nats today for a Game 5 winner-take-all to earn the right to get rolled by the Dodgers.

Let’s move on to some Day Ten of Playoff-Links:


A Little Bit of Angels News

So little, there is nothing new to report..........


October Baseball

Well this is a sage that not only did not die, but it gained a new sequel. And, like the Harry Potter series, the sequel in also quite lengthy. Today, we shall pare things down. So Stephen Strasburg had a miraculous recovery. And he also changed his mind and asked to pitch. This all happened right in the middle of the creation of a FanGraphs article advising Strasburg to stay in bed, which now stands as rather muddled. Jon Morosi was right there, johnny on the spot, to carry Scott Boras’ water on behalf of his client. And then Strasburg pitched brilliantly as the Nats won 5-0. We now get a Game 5, tonight at 5PM PDT. And, no, no more Stephen Strasburg drama. Not for this series, anyway..........But on the way out, let’s show Cubs fans having some fun at Strasburg’s expense..........Those fans ain’t no doctor, though. Their town does stink..........

Now that the Nats have won Game 4, and now that they have burned Strasburg, now they have REAL problems to deal with..........

And then, later, the Cleveland Indians lost Game 5 to the Yankees, 5-2. In so doing, they squandered a 2 games to none in a best of 5. Worse, at the point where they had that 2-0 series lead over the MFY, they had won 36 of their previous 39 games. That would be 36-3, and they would not win another game. They squandered that, too. I have to imagine that Cleveland fans watching C.C. Sabathia mow them down and wipe them off the 2017 playoff picture must be what it would feel like to be forced to watch Mike Trout in pinstripes drive in 5 runs as he crushes our Halo hopes in the 2026 playoffs. Now the Indians and their fans join us on the couch. Yep, they had more fun than we did but it’s now the same well-worn couch. Now we all pull for the Astros, hard..........

Sam Miller thinks he may be on to something. He thinks he has evidence that even in the dawning of the era of “bullpenning”, pitch counts still matter. Maybe more so than ever...........

You know what else matters? The size of the strike zone in the playoffs. It’s bigger, and hitters better adjust..........

Speaking of “bigger”, and “strike zones”, perhaps the guy happiest of all that the Yankees are advancing would be Aaron Judge. Now he has a chance to redeem himself. With 4 more strikeouts last night, Judge is up to 16 K’s for the playoffs, with only 3 hits in all 6 games of the playoffs he has participated in so far (a .050 Batting Average). The highest playoff K total this decade is Pat Burrell, back in 2010 with the Giants. That was only 22. The highest of the millennium is Alphonso Soriano at 26, back in 2003 with the Yankees...........

For the same reason that Jose Altuve is using this October to pave an easier path towards future MVP votes,, Aaron Judge has been using this same October to pave a path in the other direction..........

By the way, could Jeff Nelson, plate ump in last night’s Yanks/Indians game, have done any worse? 307 total pitches and 19 of them complete bone heads (image below). That’s 6% fail. And that’s not counting the pitches that were smack on the edges and could have gone either way (and probably did since the plane of this data is out in front of home plate, not actually over the plate yet, and still moving horizontally/vertically).


Everywhere In Baseball

The Red Sox were gonna fire John Farrell, even if it meant handing him his pink slip while he still reeked of World Series champagne. Kind of the anti-Arte world over there, ain’t it?..........But in the fishbowl that is Boston sports, Dave Dombrowski should have thought to also fire himself and beat the media to it..........

In the Managerial Merry-Go-Round, with a new opening in Boston we have new names to consider for the opening. Oh. No. Wait. Not really. Most of these are the same old hash we have already seen..........But did you notice the Alex Cora name on that list? He played 4 of his seasons in Boston, so he’s practically a homey..........

Over in The Department of Unfortunate Timing, while dozens of lives are being lost to raging fires, and thousands of homes, and hundreds of people are missing, and firefighters are exhausted and cannot even keep up with fire lines and we are days away from containment, we have an excellent long form piece on ancient wooden ballparks that burned to the ground..........

With the Cleveland loss, we are guaranteed now that a large-market team will win the World Series this year. Yeah, Houston is actually a large-market team. And their league-average payroll is only going to go up, at least for the half decade..........

What? Did you really expect a carrier to simply absorb the rate hike ESPN forced upon them?..........

A fascinating look into the sports viewing habits of Gen X and Millennials. I have my own thoughts on the suggestions in the “Implications” and “Targeting” sections. For example, I’m less certain that in-game social contests are a pathway towards getting eyeballs more glued to the event itself. And I would advocate for a way to leverage technology to enhance the viewing experience over streaming devices to the extent that they are at least as engaging, if not more so, than the in-person experience. And I would pursue a personal idea I have about publishing athlete-specific “channels”, which allow fans to follow the actions and highlights of individual players, using that as leverage into the larger sport..........


The Duffle Bag

Jon Lester picking somebody off first base is about as improbable as Stephen Strasburg hitting a playoff home run (that’s a game thread joke)...........Barry Bonds and other ballplayers among the heroic up in Northern California..........Your 2018 Last Jedi, Shohei Otani, is undergoing the knife today..........Hey, UniWatch ain’t the only jersey opinion in town any more! But that just makes them yet another media outlet to ignore the West Coast (only 2 of the 23).........No, Cubs fans, you are not better than this..........


2017 IBWAA Awards Voting

As one who is privileged to lose astronomical amounts of time in the loving labor of providing your morning entertainment, I (as are others here on the masthead) am a member of the Internet Baseball Writers Association of America. Not as formal as that fancy name, and nowhere near as recognized as that other baseball writers thingy. But, nonetheless, it gives me the chance to pretend to be serious. So, as serious as I have time to be, here are my 2017 awards ballot results and reasoning...........

My vote for National League Reliever of the Year is Kenley Jensen.

Yeah, Corey Knebel was a choice. Pat Neshek even. But dive through the FanGraphs data and just keep looking at how often Jensen rises above the rest of the NL reliever corps. It’s just a bullpen guy. And it’s the National League. I doubt anybody around here even knows 5 NL reliever names. I know I don’t. Have a vote, Jensen.

Runners up to Jensen were, in order, Knebel and then Neshak.


Source : https://www.halosheaven.com/2017/10/12/16434636/thorslinks-nats-make-cubs-fans-sick

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