ANAHEIM -- Angels center fielder Mike Trout was held out of Wednesday's 4-2 win over the Brewers after suffering a right groin strain in Tuesday’s game, but he is hopeful to return on Friday for the start of a three-game series against the Cubs at Wrigley Field. The Angels have an off-day on Thursday.
Trout went 2-for-2 with two singles in the Angels’ 11-8 win on Tuesday but suffered the injury while running to second base on a force play in the second inning. He left the game after three innings.
Trout felt better on Wednesday and said the plan is to get treatment and rest until he’s ready to return.
“Just a lot of good progress overnight,” Trout said. “It's just day to day. Obviously, we have an off-day tomorrow. There's no sense in going out there and trying to push it. It's not as sore today. I think these two days will help a lot. We'll see how I come out of tomorrow, and, hopefully, I'll play Friday or Saturday."
Trout, who is hitting .406/.592/.938 with five home runs and 12 RBIs in 12 games, said the key going forward is to not aggravate the injury, as he doesn’t want to suffer a setback that could cause him to be out long term. That’s why the Angels will be cautious with him and will monitor the weather in Chicago this weekend.
"It's frustrating, but it's part of the game,” Trout said. “Obviously, you want to be out there for the whole season. But you want to be smart. You'd rather it be a couple days than six weeks. It's just the way it is. I had a good talk with the trainers, and the doctor I saw last night said if I would've pushed it, it could've got a lot of worse."
Trout, though, said if the injury occurred later in the season in a pennant race, he might treat it differently.
“If it was later in the season and it was a tight race, I'd obviously want to be out there,” Trout said. “But you have to be smart, especially this early in the season. It's April 10 ... so if I miss a couple games here, it's not a big deal."
Ohtani feels ready
Shohei Ohtani, who is rehabbing from Tommy John surgery on Oct. 1, met with the media on Wednesday and said he believes he feels good enough physically to play right now, but that he needs to get cleared by a doctor to begin talking live batting practice. Ohtani has been hitting on the field since March 27 but has yet to take the next step of live batting practice.
Ohtani’s checkup is expected to happen as soon as this weekend, and he’ll find out more on how close he is to returning. The Angels are still targeting a return date as a designated hitter in May but Ohtani has stated he thinks he’ll be ready before then.
"Honestly, I feel like I'm ready to go right now, but I still have that medical check ahead of me," Ohtani said through interpreter Ippei Mizuhara. "I need to clear that first, and we'll see from there."
Ohtani, the reigning American League Rookie of the Year, said he believes he would only need to see live pitching for roughly a week before being ready to return. But the Angels are being cautious with him, and he’s yet to even begin baserunning drills. He also has been increasing his throwing out to 80 feet, but he won’t pitch again until 2020.
"I feel really good hitting outside,” Ohtani said. “The distance is there, the power's still there, so it's going really well so far."
Barria recalled, Bard optioned
The Angels recalled right-hander Jaime Barria from Triple-A Salt Lake on Wednesday. He replaces right-hander Luke Bard, who was optioned to Triple-A. Barria, 23, wasted no time getting on the mound. He allowed one run on four hits over 2 2/3 innings out of the bullpen and was credited with the win Wednesday. He struck out three.