Trout ready to pitch Angels to top free agents

November 21st, 2019

Superstar is no different from Angels fans in that he’s waiting for the club to make a splash this offseason in an attempt to make the postseason for the first time since 2014.

Trout, appearing on MLB Network Radio on SiriusXM on Thursday, said he’s confident that general manager Billy Eppler will make a few key additions to the roster this offseason with the Angels coming off a 90-loss season.

"I think every Angels fan or Angels player is just looking, waiting for that thing to pop up on their phone saying we're acquiring somebody or signing somebody," Trout said. “But I'm very confident in bringing in new players to surround me, and other players like Albert [Pujols], and guys who have been here a while like [Justin Upton] and [Shohei] Ohtani."

The 28-year-old has collected many regular-season accolades during his nine-year career, including three American League Most Valuable Player Awards and making eight All-Star teams. He has racked up more Wins Above Replacement than numerous Hall of Famers. However, his lone postseason appearance came in '14, when the Angels were swept by the Royals in the AL Division Series.

"I think that's the biggest thing that's left," Trout said. "You know, obviously, I had that little taste in '14, but I want to get to the playoffs and go from there."

The Angels have already been linked to the top starting pitchers available in free agency, including Gerrit Cole, Stephen Strasburg and Zack Wheeler. Eppler said the goal this offseason is to add two starters but that he’s also open to any trades. The Angels are willing to move any prospect except outfielder Jo Adell (No. 5 overall by MLB Pipeline).

Cole, an Orange County, Calif., native, remains the club’s top target. The Angels want to add an ace to the rotation to join Ohtani, who will pitch roughly once a week after not taking the mound in 2019 because of Tommy John surgery in '18.

Trout said he hasn't been asked to make a pitch to any free agent on behalf of the Angels yet, but he's ready to jump into action if needed.

"You can call my phone any time of the week and I'm here to answer it," Trout said.

Trout also said that his right foot is 100 percent healed after undergoing surgery to remove a Morton’s neuroma in September. He’s still on his annual hunting trip with family and friends in Iowa but said once he returns, he’ll start getting ready for the 2020 season.

“Every year after this trip, I come home and get back into the swing of things,” Trout said. “I’ll start getting into some activities with my legs. It’s 100 percent after the surgery, but it’s about strengthening. I’m very confident I’ll be ready for spring.”