Angels GM on Trout: 'We will not rush him'
Halos not considering shutting down star outfielder for rest of 2021
ANAHEIM -- On Wednesday, Angels general manager Perry Minasian said there haven't been any internal conversations to shut down star center fielder Mike Trout for the remainder of the season. Trout has been out of action since mid-May with a right calf strain.
Trout has continued to go through his rehab, but his progress slowed down after he felt discomfort in his calf while running on July 22. Once he is able to run aggressively, he is expected to begin a rehab assignment.
“Mike's working hard to get back,” Minasian said. “He's working. Calves are tricky. One thing about Mike is, I have been around a lot of players. I've been lucky enough to be around a lot of players in my career, haven't been around many that love the game as much as he does. I mean, he sleeps it, breathes it, eats it. He's doing everything he can in his power to get back as soon as he can. From our end, we will not rush him. We want him to feel good about how his calf feels.”
Trout has batted .333/.466/.624 with eight homers and 18 RBIs in 36 games for the Halos this season.
Minasian impressed by youngsters
While the Angels have hovered around .500 for most of the season, they have had a number of their top prospects join the big league club.
Some noteworthy callups have included outfielder Brandon Marsh (the Halos' No. 1 prospect per MLB Pipeline) and left-hander Reid Detmers (No. 2). There's also been the return of outfielder Jo Adell, who was the Angels’ top prospect in 2020.
The performances from the Angels’ youngsters have impressed Minasian, especially on the pitching side. Entering Wednesday, Halos starters led the Majors with 143 2/3 innings pitched since the All-Star break.
Standout rotation performances have come from right-hander Jaime Barria, who has a 2.29 ERA in 19 2/3 innings since the All-Star break, and righty Chris Rodriguez, who entered the season as the club's No. 4 prospect. Rodriguez tossed four innings of one-run ball in his second MLB start in the first game of Tuesday's split doubleheader against the Blue Jays.
"That's probably been the biggest story,” Minasian said of the pitching. “That's not surprising. They're all talented.”
On the offensive side, Adell has been making positive strides from a season ago, which has been noticed.
Adell batted .161/.212/.266 in 38 games in 2020, but he's had better numbers in his second stint in the Majors. The 22-year-old entered Wednesday slashing .259/.310/.407 in seven games since getting recalled from Triple-A Salt Lake on Aug. 2.
“Jo's done a nice job. Brandon, too,” Minasian said. “It's not an easy transition. This game is really hard, especially for young players. Jo is young. I think sometimes we lose track of how young these guys are, so I think he's improved defensively. I think we've seen that. Let's watch the games relative to last year. He's done a nice job on that, and offensively, he's had better at-bats. I think he's just playing, experiencing different things, experiencing different environments.”
Ohtani set for faceoff vs. Vlad Jr.
Thursday's game will feature Shohei Ohtani on the mound for the Angels and Vladimir Guerrero Jr. likely in the lineup for the Blue Jays. The matchup between the two young stars is one that Halos manager Joe Maddon said will be a big moment for MLB.
Ohtani leads the Majors with 38 homers, with Guerrero close behind at 35. On the mound, Ohtani has allowed only two runs in 19 innings since the All-Star break, lowering his season ERA to 2.93.
Maddon said he's excited for the Ohtani vs. Guerrero meeting.
“That's interesting, right?” Maddon said. “That's probably a first, especially in August. There are so many great subplots in this whole thing. And one of my lines all year, with the guys early on in camp and I write it myself every day on the lineup card, I write the phrase 'Don't miss it.' … Don't take this for granted, and don't think it's gonna happen often. It's not.”