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Adell smashes first 2 career home runs

@RhettBollinger
August 30, 2020

Angels rookie right fielder Jo Adell not only hit his first career homer in Saturday’s 16-3 rout of the Mariners at Angel Stadium, he doubled up and hit two. Adell became the fifth Angels player to hit their first two career homers in the same game and the third-youngest to

Angels rookie right fielder Jo Adell not only hit his first career homer in Saturday’s 16-3 rout of the Mariners at Angel Stadium, he doubled up and hit two.

Adell became the fifth Angels player to hit their first two career homers in the same game and the third-youngest to have a multihomer game behind Mike Trout and Tom Brunansky.

Box score

"It was definitely a little bit of relief to get the first one out of the way," Adell said. "But I wasn't really too pressed about getting the ball in the air and trying to go deep and whatnot. I stuck with the process and just told myself, 'Hard through the middle,' and met a changeup out in front and got under it, and things went from there."

Adell, playing in his 18th career game, got that changeup from lefty starter Justus Sheffield in the second inning and launched it a Statcast-projected 437 feet to left field. The two-run shot, which had an exit velocity of 109.7 mph, gave the Angels a 3-1 lead. It was the first home run Sheffield has allowed this season.

Angels manager Joe Maddon was talking with hitting coach John Mallee at the time, but the skipper knew it was gone just from the sound it made off the bat.

"I had my head not quite focused, and then it was the loudest sound," Maddon said. "That was the sound of a power hitter right there. It was a loud crack, and then I did get to see the flight and then I was able to see the replay."

Adell's second homer came in the sixth off another lefty, reliever Aaron Fletcher, and it was a laser to right field, showing off Adell’s power to all fields. The solo shot left the bat at 107 mph and went a projected 379 feet, giving the Angels a 7-1 lead.

Adell, ranked by MLB Pipeline as the Angels' top prospect and the No. 6 prospect in all of baseball, has struggled since his Aug. 4 callup, but the 21-year-old has historically been a slow starter at each new professional level he reaches.

"For me, it's exposure, it's education,” Adell said. “My mom used to say that all the time. The more you get to see these pitchers and see what they're trying to do, the more you're able to make the adjustments and perform at a higher level. I think that's kind of what had to happen for me to have success.”

At 21 years, 143 days old, Adell became the youngest Angels player to homer since Trout hit the 30th blast of his rookie season in 2012. Adell is also one of just four Angels players to hit a homer before turning 22 in the last 40 seasons, joining Trout, Dick Schofield and Brunansky. Brunansky was also the last Angels player to have his first two career homers in the same game, on April 11, 1981.

“He's becoming a little bit more comfortable being here,” Maddon said of Adell. “And as he does that, you're going to see what everybody else has seen when he was drafted or was playing in the Minor Leagues. Sometimes it's not easy.”

Adell's big night came as part of an offensive barrage for the Angels, who scored their most runs since posting 21 on July 2, 2016, at Boston. Trout went 3-for-4 with six RBIs, including a three-run homer in the seventh inning. It was the third career six-RBI game for Trout, who has a team-leading 12 homers and a Major League-leading 32 RBIs.

The outburst backed right-hander Dylan Bundy in what could’ve been his last start with the Angels, as he’s been involved in trade rumors leading up to Monday’s 1 p.m. PT Trade Deadline. Bundy went 5 1/3 innings, allowing one run on four hits and three walks to improve to 4-2 with a 2.47 ERA in seven starts.

Bundy, though, said he’s blocked out all the trade talk from his thoughts.

“I don’t really care about it,” Bundy said. “I’ve heard that for a lot of years. All you can do is pitch for the team you’re on now and let all that other stuff take care of itself.”

Rhett Bollinger covers the Angels for MLB.com. He previously covered the Twins from 2011-18. Follow him on Twitter @RhettBollinger and Facebook.