MLB.com names Mike Trout baseball’s number one prospect

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There are a lot of competing prospect rankings out there — I’m personally partial to Keith Law’s, which will come out today, I gather — but MLB.com puts a good one out every year too.  They did yesterday, and they rank the Angels’ 19-year-old outfield prospect Mike Trout as the toppermost of the poppermost:

Trout, one of two Angels first-round choices in the 2009 First-Year Player Draft, turned 19 on Aug. 7 in the midst of an eye-popping 2010 season. After hitting .362 with 45 steals and a .526 slugging mark at Class A Cedar Rapids, where he would be named the Midwest League MVP, he appeared in the All-Star Futures Game preceding the MLB All-Star Game at Angel Stadium …

… Moving up to advanced A Rancho Cucamonga after the break, he batted .306 and slugged .434, hitting .367 with three homers in the California League playoffs. Trout will experience big league camp for the first time in Arizona this spring. He was an instant hit last spring in Cactus League play, slashing a double and triple to each gap in his first three at-bats, showcasing his blazing speed.

Of course, since he’s an Angels property, I presume that he’ll soon be traded to the Indians along with Kendry Morales for Lance Travis Hafner.*

*Sorry! Had old school sim-baseball on the brain!

Giancarlo Stanton will defend his Home Run Derby title

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The Marlins announced on Sunday that outfielder Giancarlo Stanton will defend his Home Run Derby title when the city of Miami host’s the All-Star Game festivities next month.

Stanton, 27, defeated Todd Frazier in the finals of last year’s Home Run Derby at Petco Park, hitting 20 home runs to Frazier’s 13. Stanton hit a total of 61 home runs in the Derby. This will be the third Home Run Derby in which Stanton has participated.

Stanton also went 1-for-3 with a solo home run to help the Marlins defeat the Cubs 4-2 on Sunday. He’s now batting .274/.357/.551 with 20 home runs and 49 RBI in 311 plate appearances.

Aaron Hicks to go on the disabled list with an oblique injury

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Yankees outfielder Aaron Hicks left Sunday’s game against the Rangers after four innings due to soreness in his right oblique. After the game, Hicks said he expects to go on the 10-day disabled list and miss the next three to four weeks, MLB.com’s Bryan Hoch reports.

Hicks was 1-for-2 with a single before departing on Sunday. He entered the game batting .288/.397/.515 with 10 home runs and 37 RBI in 198 plate appearances. It is by far the best season of his career.

Jacoby Ellsbury is on his way back from a concussion, so the Yankees will only have to bridge the gap in center field for a week or two. Mason Williams could draw some starts in center field in the meantime.