Mike Trout isn’t the fastest man in baseball because that honor likely goes to Reds prospect Billy Hamilton, but the Angels phenom is still pretty damn fast.
How fast, exactly? Last night Trout beat out a bunt down the third base line despite Twins third baseman Danny Valencia playing him to bunt and did so while getting to first base in ridiculous time.
Angels third base coach Dino Ebel times runners with a stop watch and told Mark Saxon of ESPN Los Angeles that Trout went from the batter’s box to first base in 3.53 seconds.
That’s insanely fast for a right-handed hitter and as Saxon notes the legend of a young, Trout-aged Mickey Mantle included him getting to first base in 3.5 seconds from the right side of the plate.
Prior to being called up last week Trout stole 57 bases per 150 games in the minors along with hitting .342. Oh, and he’s 20 years old.
Yesterday Mike Trout left the Marlins-Angels game after hurting his thumb while sliding head first into second base. After the game the Angels talked about it as if it were just a sprain. Trout had an MRI today, however, and the diagnosis is far worse: he has a torn thumb ligament.
While a treatment option has not yet been chosen, surgery is a possibility. A certainty is that he’ll miss, at the very least, several weeks of play. He has been placed on the disabled list for the first time in his career.
Trout, the reigning AL MVP and, without question, the best player in baseball, is batting .337/.461/.742 with 16 home runs, 36 RBI, 36 runs scored, and 10 stolen bases in 206 plate appearances this season. Even with the one of the weaker supporting casts in baseball, Trout had the Angels near .500 and in at least arguable contention in the AL West.
Without him, they are likely sunk. Without him, baseball is worse off.
SAN FRANCISCO — Nationals slugger Bryce Harper and San Francisco reliever Hunter Strickland both landed punches to the head during a wild brawl that erupted Monday after a hit by pitch.
Harper was hit in the right hip by Strickland’s 98 mph fastball in the eighth inning with Washington ahead 2-0.
Harper pointed the bat toward Strickland, charged the mound and fired his batting helmet wide of the pitcher. They started to swing away and they each connected as the benches and bullpens emptied.
At least two Giants players forcefully dragged Strickland from the middle of the brawl all the way into the dugout. Harper and Strickland were both ejected.
In the 2014 NL Division Series, Harper hit two home runs off Strickland. After the star’s second shot, in Game 4, he stared at Strickland as he rounded the bases.