Mike Trout could hardly believe what was going on with his phone. Text and voicemail messages were piling up while he’d gone out rabbit hunting in January back home in New Jersey. Spring Training with his Angels teammates in Arizona was still weeks away. Without knowing it, he was in the center of a minor media storm. President Barack Obama was explaining a multifaceted farm bill that was serving several different purposes. He went on to say, “It’s like a Swiss army knife. It’s like Mike Trout, for those of you who know baseball.” “My phone was buzzing like every five seconds, just text message, text message,” says Trout. “I finally watched the video when I got home. It’s a good shout-out from the President. It’s a crazy feeling.” Crazy is a great way to describe the numbers that Trout has put up at the Major League level since he was called up for good on April 28, 2012. During that 2012 campaign, despite missing almost the first entire month of the season, the Angels outfielder filled out box scores by hitting .326 with 30 home runs, 49 stolen bases, a league-leading 129 runs, 83 RBI, and enough highlightreel catches to keep the SportsCenter video editors staying up late for the West Coast games. His powerful build and incredible power brought back memories of Yankees Hall of Famer Mickey Mantle. And what did Trout do for an encore after his Rookie of the Year and NL MVP runner-up campaign? Well, in his first full Major League season Trout played in 157 games, hitting .323 with 27 home runs, 33 steals, 109 runs and 97 RBI. Showing incredible pitch recognition for someone who only turned 22 last August, Trout walked 110 times, giving him a .432 on-base percentage and a .988 OPS. Both of those numbers placed him third in all of baseball. PERFECT CINCO JEFF GROSS (2); JOE ROBBINS; JIM MCISAAC; DAVID MAXWELL/GETTY IMAGES SPORT Clockwise from top left: Being able to field your position (Mike Trout), run the bases (Andrew McCutchen), hit for power (Carlos Gonzalez, throw (Yasiel Puig) and hit for average (Carlos Gomez) are the hallmarks of a five-tool player.
2014 Oakland Gameday HQ
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