Mantle's son has high praise for Trout
Offspring of Yankees great says Angels star is a must-watch talent
Since Mike Trout took the baseball world by storm as a rookie in 2012, he's been drawing comparisons to another famous center fielder with plenty of power and speed: Mickey Mantle.
Before Friday night's marquee matchup at Yankee Stadium, the Angels outfielder received another such comparison from someone who would know best: David Mantle, the son of the Yankees icon and Hall of Famer.
"It's been almost 50 years since my dad played his last game, and yet every time a kid with a combo of speed and power comes along, they say, 'This could be the next Mickey Mantle,' " David Mantle said in a segment for MLB Network.
"I'm a baseball fan. When I want to see someone playing like Mickey Mantle, I can pull out the home movies. Or I can just watch this kid with the Angels, Mike Trout. Like dad, he's got all the tools. He can run. He can field. And he can hit. Boy, can he hit."
Statistically, there's no doubt that Trout stacks up with Mantle so far in his young career. Baseball-Reference.com lists Mantle as Trout's No. 1 comparable through his age-22 season.
Take a look at the numbers:
Trout, 2012-14, age 20-22: .311/.403/.561, 93 HR, 291 RBIs, 98 SB
Mantle, 1952-54, age 20-22: .303/.400/.518, 71 HR, 281 RBIs, 17 SB
Trout has already won an American League MVP Award, and some would argue he should own three of those trophies by now. Mantle, by comparison, won his first in 1956, after his age-24 season.
By some advanced metrics, however, Trout is already ahead of Mantle's exemplary career pace. Through his first three full seasons in the Majors, Trout totaled 27.9 Wins Above Replacement, according to Baseball-Reference. Mantle recorded 18.7 WAR through his first three seasons.
Of course Mantle would go on to win three MVP Awards, hit 536 home runs and compile 2,415 hits during an 18-year career with the Yankees, while Trout is only 23 years old and in his fifth big league season.
But it's certainly fair to make the comparison. Just ask Mantle's son, and keep an eye on center field at Yankee Stadium this weekend.
"Like my dad, Mike Trout isn't just good. He's compelling and exciting to watch. So if you're a baseball fan, you've got a chance to see a modern-day Mickey Mantle in center at Yankee Stadium with your own eyes," David Mantle said on MLB Network. "Just be sure to call him Mike, because the kid has clearly made a name for himself. As for the pinstripes, those you're just going to have to imagine."