For nine whole days, Mike Trout appeared mortal. And then things returned to normal.
The Los Angeles Angels star hit his 16th homer of the year on Thursday to take the MLB lead in home runs and continue another torrid stretch at the plate.
From Aug. 14 to Aug. 25, Trout was hitting .163 with 16 strikeouts (but still hitting some homers, naturally). There was some talk of a down year for a player who simply doesn’t have down years. In the 12 games since, his numbers have ... improved.
From Aug. 14-25, Mike Trout had what for him qualifies as a massive slump (.163/.281/.347, 2 HR, 16 SO in 13 G).— Andrew Simon (@AndrewSimonMLB) September 10, 2020
In 11+ G since then:
Trout’s homer on Thursday was a moonshot, taking a low changeup from Texas Rangers starter Kyle Gibson into the upper deck of Globe Life Field. The homer was measured at 449 feet by Statcast. 16 homers in 40 games means Trout is now on pace for more than 21 homers in the shortened season.
Trout later followed that up with some unintentional damage at the stadium.
Mike Trout, doing damage: pic.twitter.com/yPl3hPMvXA— Fabian Ardaya (@FabianArdaya) September 10, 2020
None of this too surprising from the best player in the game, though it’s worth noting that home runs are one of the few stats in which Trout has not led the AL in a season during his 10-year career. Trout is also leading MLB in homers despite spending four games on the paternity list earlier this season.
Trout is now hitting .298/.394/.669 on the season with 37 runs and 39 RBIs and climbing back toward his customary place atop the WAR leaderboards for an Angels team that is struggling yet again. Right behind him on the home run leaderboard are San Diego Padres breakout star Fernando Tatis Jr. and Minnesota Twins veteran Nelson Cruz with 15. Los Angeles Dodgers outfielder Mookie Betts also looms at 14 homers, as do Toronto Blue Jays outfielder Teoscar Hernandez and New York Yankees first baseman Luke Voit.
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