Trout (left hand) returns to injured list

August 25th, 2023

NEW YORK -- The Angels got a double dose of rough news on Wednesday. Not only did two-way phenom Shohei Ohtani suffer a torn ulnar collateral ligament in his right elbow in his start against the Reds, but the club announced fellow superstar  would be headed back to the injured list. 

Trout was reinstated from the IL on Tuesday after missing 38 games with a hamate fracture in his left hand and was officially placed on the IL again before Friday’s game against the Mets at Citi Field. First baseman/outfielder  was called up from Triple-A Salt Lake to replace Trout on the active roster.

Trout went 1-for-4 with an infield single in his return on Tuesday but felt pain in his hand when batting. He came in early before Wednesday’s doubleheader for treatment, but it became clear he needed more time to let his hand heal. Trout suffered the injury on July 3 and had the hook of his left hamate bone removed on July 5. 

“I wasn’t ready,” Trout said. “I was in some pain. I thought I could push it and get back out there. But I came in the next day and it was really, really sore. I was banking on it being bearable, but it was affecting my swing and my at-bat.”

Trout, a three-time American League MVP and 11-time All-Star, is hitting .263/.367/.490 with 18 homers and 44 RBIs in 82 games this season. He said he was hopeful he’d be able to play through the pain but was told he could overcompensate it and cause a different injury.

“It was on contact and swing and misses, I mean, you saw my swings, they weren’t my ‘A’ swings,” Trout said. “It felt good a little bit in the first at-bat but once I started fouling pitches, it wasn’t like an at-bat for me. It was more like my hand just really hurts and I’m just trying to get through it.”

Angels general manager Perry Minasian said the team believes Trout will be back this season and that he simply tried to return from the injury too soon. It was expected to take four to eight weeks to heal, and Trout returned after roughly seven weeks. 

“He’s dying to play, but it’s pain in his hands, and you need your hands to hit,” Minasian said. “It’s a significant injury he’s coming back from. The last thing we want to do is have him start compensating and it affects other parts. So we’re going to give it at least 10 days to calm down.”

Trout said he also believes he’ll be back at some point this season but will give his hand some rest in the short term. Randal Grichuk, Mickey Moniak and Hunter Renfroe will be the regular outfielders in his absence with Cabbage serving as the fourth outfielder.

“We have time left,” Trout said. “I’m just going to make sure it’s fully healed before I get back out there.”