Welcome to the first Weekend Links of the 2023 season! 180 days of the rhythm of baseball filling our days and nights, making the world seem just a little bit better in a subtle, unquantifiable way.
For those of you who didn’t watch a lot of Spring Training, the games are a little different this year. 8 rules have been changed or added to speed up games and hopefully increase action on the field.
The overarching storyline around baseball, particularly here in Angels land will be Shohei Ohtani. The Angels are under a lot of pressure to show Ohtani they can win. The team has high expectations, but will likely lose Ohtani if they don’t win.
High expectations? Not sky high but most of the staff here predict a Wild Card berth to the post season.
And we’re not alone. OC Register beat write Jeff Fletcher joined me for an interview and predicted the same.
Yes, that’s my goofy mug on the thumbnail. Fletcher also talked about Arte’s press conference and his book on Shohei Ohtani. Give it a watch/listen in lieu of long form reading this week.
The Angels opened on the road against Oakland (again) last night. Here’s a solid rundown of the series and how the Angels lineup and rotation should play out this year.
If you listen to the game on the radio, Angels broadcasts will sound differently than pretty much everybody else’s this year.
Top prospect Logan O’Hoppe caught the first game. He’s grateful for his big league spot. I love stories about guys finding out they are going to The Show, and this is a good one.
O’Hoppe became the youngest Angels catcher to play on Opening Day. That’s another solid retelling of O’Hoppe’s story.
In the rotation for now is the out of options Tucker Davidson. Griffin Canning conveniently suffered a groin injury but is eligible to come off the IL the day we’ll need a sixth starter for the first time.
Kind of getting overlooked on the field is Mike Trout. The biggest news from him this week involved opening a golf course with Tiger Woods. I’m hoping the really big news comes in the form of a vintage Trout season on the field.
One guy who would like to join Ohtani and Trout in the MVP conversation is Taylor Ward, who has set his sights on a .900 OPS season.
Ward is a very nice guy. I’ve met him and know several people who have interacted with him at Spring Training. Palm Springs Magazine did a well deserved piece on him.
From around the league:
The folks over at FanGraphs did their predictions. They are less bullish on the Angels for a Wild Card but one guy thinks we’ll win the division.
In taking a look at their positional rankings, there is room for the team to outperform a few of their expectations. A healthy Jared Walsh, even in a platoon with Brandon Drury, should be better than the 25th best first baseman. And the bullpen is better than 29th in the league. That said, they rank third base at 8.
Aaron Judge wasted no time and cracked the first home run of the season.
While I don’t wish injury on anybody, I don’t think any of us will cry over Justin Verlander hitting the IL.
Joining him is Atlanta ace Max Fried who left yesterday’s game with a hamstring injury.
A couple of weeks ago John linked a horrible strike three call to end a college game. The umpire behind that call apologized and gave his take on the situation.
There’s way too much to link this week. Good problem to have. Enjoy your weekend and link what I missed.
Arte has lost his mind. Proof is saying sending out the Radio Broadcast Team out to do games live is a waste of money. Jeez….How about O’Patty and Erica Weston staying home to save money?
Today’s game we will see fletch brought in later in the game.
And we did, lucky guess? 😉
5th Rd 2018 MLB Draft……..We chose Kyle Bradish in the 4th Rd INSTEAD!!!!!! 😖 😭 😡 😠 💩
I’m unsure about what your point behind these posts is. If it’s that the organization is bad at identifying and drafting talent, doesn’t that just put them into the same boat with 28 other clubs? Or are you saying that it’s only the Angels that are bad at drafting? If so, what about the 23 times other teams passed on Mike Trout when he was drafted?
Rendon in today’s lineup
More footage of the Rendon mess. This goes back quite a bit and adds context. Unfortunately it appears worse for Rendon.
I must be an Angels fan. From this footage it looks like instead of swinging or swiping at the guy, Rendon is just releasing the shirt with a “tchah!” upwards motion. I wouldn’t call it “scary details”. Manfred, however, is going to do something I won’t like.
The grabbing of a fan and pulling him over is likely to be viewed as badly as swinging at him. It is technically an assault and Rendon did it after thinking about it rather than as an immediate reaction.
Fan, wouldn’t it be “assault and battery?” My understanding is the “assault” is actually the approach and the “battery” (which is worse) is technically the putting of hands on someone else.
I thought assault was worse because of the premeditation aspect?
There is a fan like this at every stadium in every sport. Rendon was frustrated. He deserves punishment, hopefully its just not like 15 games or something.
He’s gonna get something…. he’s also gonna get a beer from just about every player ever.
I’m sure this will get worse, it’s the Angels, it always get worse.
What am I missing? Why is new angle worse for Rendon?
When do we get the grassy knoll video?
I think it’s worse for Rendon because he calls the fan over to him and then grabs his shirt (which is an assault by the way). I also think it’s worse because the fan is barking at the whole team. The fan is an idiot but this dude is in every ballpark – he’s got a smile on his face, slaps a high-five with an older guy etc. All the players ignore this obnoxious fan and Rendon seems to also – at first. Rendon walks past him, stops and then calls him over to him and grabs him. So, there was a cooling down period, Rendon then thinks about it, stops, calls him over and grabs him. That is worse than an immediate reaction as it appeared in the first video.
Thing will come out, that guy should have got a beat down, Redon was wrong, but the fan deserved it
Angels trAdition, 25-50 games, Redon is D-bag, will further tarnish the Angels, bring up the past, Skaggs – Kay. minor league crap, all the other shit that goes along with the angels, Arte, Shohei trade talk, team sucks.
Again, that fan exists everywhere. People are idiots. No one deserves “a beat down” for words – particularly in a sports stadium where folks are intoxicated and encouraged to root hard for their teams. “The fan deserved it” does not work in this situation. Now – if the fan had reached out and hit Rendon or thrown something at him – different situation. But words are just words. And the douchebag fan was apparently not targeting Rendon – he was yelling crap at everyone just like it happens in Boston, New York etc.
Im thinking it will be 15 games which will be appealed and Rendon will play until it finally gets reduced to around 10 games and a 6 figure fine. He may also have to agree to some anger management.
This ain’t The Malice In The Palace in the NBA where former Laker Ron Artest got into it with Ben Wallace and the fans in the stands. Get over it dude and how about start winning some damm games for a change!!!
Wish we had Josh Jung instead of him. 👺 😡 💪 BYE!!!
Watch the video in reverse. Clearly, you can see this is reminiscent of the Malice in the Palace. I Bury Paul.
Classic Beatles reference!
Wasn’t Ringon the drummer?
The walrus was Paul
Can’t stay healthy anymore
Turn the other cheek dude! No wonder I don’t like him.
We’ll everyone knows why we don’t like you
I am not sure this makes it look worse for Rendon. None of it would have been a problem had he not grabbed the guy and swung on him. Getting in his face or talking back would not have resulted in anything.
I just keep wondering who the older man in the jacket is who pushes Oakland fan from the back, so he can get closer to Rendon.
Not a great look for Rendon but fans should know… Don’t think you’re gonna speak to someone in real life like you would from the comfort of your keyboard & not get ran up on. Rendon has that fine $ in his couch cushion. He clearly ain’t worried about it.
Clearly the fan had an agenda, moving down to the railing to get close to the Rendon and the players. Such a dick-move to mouth off after a game when your team has won. .
Gubie’s key for today’s game is “Are You Strong Enough to Be My Man” by Sheryl Crow.
Good morning 2002…😃👊👊👌
Better than “Are You Weak Enough to Be My Bitch.” That’s what it will be if the Angels lose this series to the A’s.
I was going with An odd to the bullpen called “Don’t let me down” by the Beatles
Jerry’s M’s are Kwan’d with 5 RBI and lose 9-4….Ray Ray gets roughed up.
Eat it M’s
Long-Time Announcer Steve Klauke to Retire as the “Voice of the Bees” Following 2023 Season
He is a good announcer.
I always enjoy listening to him with the Bees. If you remember, he filled in for Terry Smith one year. I got to meet him at a college basketball game that he was calling in Idaho during the next off season and I told him what a great job he did. He was really friendly and knows Angels baseball.
Oh, wow, did not know that he filled in for Terry. I have heard a couple of his Bee’s games and liked it a lot. I had read in an article that he also did college basketball and football for Weber St. too.
Yes, I met him at a Weber State-Idaho State basketball game. I think that he filled in for Terry for a few games in 2018.
Look at the Dodgers blowing May’s 7 scoreless inning gem.
He…gone? Friedman should just blow his team up, it’s over.
MARK WALTER SELL THE TEAM!
And gave up a 1-0 lead in the 8th, by a stupid left hander Vesia that blew it, Snakes win 2-1…that does sound familiar. Off with their heads!
Padres suck too
All those big star contracts and they can’t beat the Rox…sad.
Obviously the Dodgers and Padres are doomed. The Rockies will win it all.
CJ Cron about to win MVP and WS MVP.
Did their owners bribe the city councils or mayors?
My $.02 on the Rendon thing:
6. Cheap Arte won’t have to pay him while he’s suspended.
Valid take. But that fan exists at every stadium and park that they play in. A player can’t grab a heckler just because he or she gets under his skin. MLB players make big bucks and are in the public eye, so this goes with that territory. They just gotta let it bounce off of them or find some other outlet as opposed to what Rendón did.
Respectfully, I don’t understand why Rendon wasn’t in control enough of his emotions to keep on walking to the clubhouse. It’s one thing to be on the field making a play and getting caught up in the moment and losing control. However, walking back after the game and some dude in the stands calls you a “bitch” and you feel the need to grab him and take a swipe at his head – that’s just inexcusably stupid.
Rendon has been on the shelf for the last two seasons. He’s seemingly healthy now and the first game of the new season he does something like this that will likely cause him to miss games? If an Oakland fan calls him a “bitch” and it sets him off, what’s he going to do in New York, Boston, Houston or just about anywhere else and he’s called things much worse than “bitch”?
Look at the video – Trout saw what was going on and kept walking. Rendon has to know how important his presence on the field is to his teammates. Rendon has to be smarter than this.
Thank you for restoring the profile page. So much easier to check up on replies to comments.
Let us know if anything is missing. I think most should be back now from the big crash.
Everything else looks same as usual. Thanks for all you do, Jessica!
That’s why I noticed and commented on it a few days back!
I feel like there must be two Rendon videos. The one I saw had Rendon grab the guy’s shirt, say stuff, then take a fake swipe at his hat with no intent to actually hit him. Apparently others saw Rendon swing and miss. So that’s in the 2nd video, right?
Your sarcasm is noted lol.
And I think your interpretation is right. But whether he meant to hit him on just knock his hat off he still put his hands on a fan.
yep. I think it’ll be 7-10 days
That would be my guess as well. And something like a 25k fine.
yeah that’s what we would hope. how about 25 games, reduced to 15-20? mlb gonna make a statement
Yeah, my guess is that an example is going to be made. It happened on opening day on a very public stage with Ohtani starting the game. MLB is going to have its pound of flesh.
There’s also the risk that Oakland PD can be douche bags and charge Rendon with criminal assault.
It’ll be misdemeanor assault if anything that bad… pled down… say no to drugs…. civil suite…. chubby man cries some…. gets paid…. blame Arte.
Agreed. Interesting to see if Tony starts tomorrow.
Why shouldn’t he?
Team may discipline him – he grabbed a fan….
Good that way Gio Urshella plays 3B instead of him!!
Really sucks that we have to dwell on this game for almost 48 hours.
I am so sick of the commentary since last night.
Meh – it’s medicinal. Like taking a shot of HCl
Well – Rendon didn’t help anything in that department.
No, he didn’t.
Mostly just meant all the negative talk around how pissed Ohtani looked and all the “he gone” comments.
It’s gonna get so old.
It’s going to be a bipolar year for sure
Bipolar!? Is this season single?
You like them high on the crazy scale?
I have come to suspect myself of this.
gaw, I’m planning on watching the doyers 😒
Flipping between them and the Padres/Rox.
Rendon has gone from a WS hero to a zero (less than that from a trade value perspective) for how bad his contract is. If he wants to turn things around, that’s not the way to do it. You get out there, work every day, harder than everybody else, and have an amazing comeback season. That’s how to shut the asshole fans up.
I don’t understand hardly any of you people on this website.
How did this become “Rendon was trying to turn things around.”?
Rendon just stood up for Rendon, which is better than Rendon just taking it if that’s what Rendon needs. No one was thinking about turning the team around. Same as if any of you just walked up to me and called me a bitch and then got close enough to me that I could reach you collar.
If you are huge or an MMA fighter, sure, I guess I am indeed a bitch. If you are you, there’s a really good chance I’m gonna motivate you to apologize. Especially if you catch me in a “heated” situation… like when I have to do math or get ski boots off.
It’s simple. Oakland A’ss twat fan felt safe and opened his big fking mouth Anthony Rendon made sure the fan understood it’s not THAT safe. Thus saving himself from becoming the kind of guy who posts “THERE IS NO PLACE FOR….” comments on chat boards while sitting down to pee.
It was a strait forward personal act of mental health preserving performative aggression.
And that is the crux of our disagreement. He can’t do that. Go punch a water cooler (wait don’t because he’ll likely injure himself and be out 6 months) or throw bats or anything other than grab a fan by the shirt and swing at him. This is MLB. He’s a professional. How many parks and stadiums has he been subject to heckling?! It happens everywhere.
If he’s dealing with anger issues – see a shrink.
Maybe the bigger question is why did this cause him to snap?! What was different?
In any event, I don’t think violence of any kind is the proper reaction to words no matter what the situation. Just walk away and let the other person look crazy.
The fan needed a safe space
Yeah, agree Good for Anthony. Pissed off about losing and some clown pops off. Yes, MLB frowns on that and the loser fan will call a lawyer but I support Rendon here, 200%.
From an emotional and pride standpoint he was in the right. Unfortunately he isn’t in the right from a legal one…
Yep, that part is not good but we’ve seen this in the NBA where fans are so close and verbally crossing the line, things escalate quickly..if a fan goes down close to insult, better be ready for blows or STFU.
as my friends mom once said to him…. you were right, now you’re in trouble. which is true.
On the other hand if Rendon took a little action it’s likely that he needed to, so now he’ll have to face the consequences and then hopefully get on with it and play well…. rather than being weighed down by CtPG donkey juju and having to swallow it when some dildo with a hat on calls him a bitch.
Take your lumps Anthony…. then hit baseballs.
Can we void his contract for “conduct unbecoming a pro athlete” or something?
That would be dope. Cut his huge contract loose. Let Ohtani go destroy some other teams payroll…. maybe get a couple prospects for him. If Trout demands a trade send him out too or keep him as our George Brett.
My True CheapnEvil plan for baseball domination is in motion. 60M payroll by 2025. Spend on the farm and scouting like crazy. Win the world series with a sub 75M payroll. Laugh evil laugh.
That thought crossed my mind. I’m sure Arte called his lawyers today. But that’s not going to be enough to void the contract.
In the grand scheme of things it doesn’t matter. I like the fire. He’ll get suspended. So what. Shohei is gone anyway. It’s his fault for not pitching a complete game shutout. He knows better.
Rendon’s a professional (entertainer, really) and it’s part of his job to block out fans who are a-holes.
Now let’s see how many games he misses for us because he couldn’t act like a pro.
Got to say, it is amazing to read all the comments here after one game, it’s just one game, it’s not the last game of the season with the playoffs hanging in the balance.
The sky is not falling, in the scheme of things the fact that our bullpen blew the game, or that our hitters could not hit, that Rendon acted like an asshat, that our middle fielders didn’t get to a ground ball because their lack of skill, that our star two-way player pitched a great game and might be pissed the bullpen blew it, hitters didn’t hit and he did not get a win (which according to most folks here is a totally meaningless stat), our manager made some questionable moves, our general manager did not cut the bullpen players who blew the game before the season started, did not keep our no-hit great field SS on the major league roster so he could make the plays our other so-so fielders didn’t, is no big deal. it’s just one damn game.
I’ve been watching the Angels since 1965 (been a fan since I can remember) I have seen plenty of players pulling guns on one another in the locker room, there star batting champion attacking their manager, weird injuries players falling down stairs, dugout steps, running into fences, GM’s that made questionable trades, owners that over spent on free Agents, turned around and would not spend money, bad plays, unlucky plays, players murdered, killed by drugs, it goes with being an Angels fan it’s a total package, but I will never stop being a fan, I will never give up hope that goes with being a fan and I will never, ever give up after one damn game.
Man, the Angels just can’t seem to shake the notoriety.
Rendon is getting a lot of flack, but what about the fan?
What is it about being in a crowd, having a bit of anonymity, that brings out the nastiness in some people? I remember as a kid going to an Angels-A’s game and heckling their right fielder, Tony Armas, non-stop. Why didn’t my father tell me to knock it off?
Weaver = White, scowly, social media bitch.
Rendon = Mexican, smooth, will actually go at a guy who fks with him.
Weaver = acceptable.
I like the guy who will actually get his hackles up with a person in front of him. I don’t want Ty Cobb levels of angst, but a little Bob Gibson/Nolan Ryan isn’t gonna hurt. There will always be some puss out there being outraged, but I still think the team could use more knuckle scars and less loud talk in post game interviews.
Spoken like a true Grich.
No. I want the Gritch off….
Actually, I love Bobby Grich…. he was so excited.