Angels outfielder Mike Trout hit a solo home run off of Athletics lefty Sean Manaea in the third inning of Sunday’s game, boosting his team’s lead to 2-0 and notching the 999th hit of his seven-year career. Trout struck out in his first at-bat, then walked twice following the homer before popping out to end the game in an 11-10 loss.
Trout will celebrate his 26th birthday tomorrow. Of his 999 hits, 190 are home runs, 191 are doubles. He’s knocked in 548 runs and scored 651 times. He has also stolen 156 bases.
Dating back to 1901, there have been only 11 players to accrue at least 950 hits and 175 home runs before their 26th birthday. Trout is one of them along with Miguel Cabrera, Albert Pujols, Alex Rodriguez, Ken Griffey, Jr., Orlando Cepeda, Frank Robinson, Hank Aaron, Mickey Mantle, Mel Ott, and Jimmie Foxx. That is some rarefied air. If we add stolen bases into the mix, only Trout and A-Rod had 950 hits, 175 homers, and 150 stolen bases by their 26th birthday.
Trout also just surpassed 53 Wins Above Replacement for his career, per Baseball Reference. Selecting some notable Hall of Famers, Trout has already eclipsed Kirby Puckett, Orlando Cepeda, Ralph Kiner, and Jim Rice.
Had Trout not missed a month and a half earlier this season with a torn ligament in his thumb, he would be well on his way to winning his third career AL MVP Award. He’ll have to contend with Aaron Judge and Jose Altuve for more hardware. Trout is also a six-time All-Star, five-time Silver Slugger winner, and the 2012 AL Rookie of the Year Award winner. What Trout has been able to accomplish in fewer than seven full seasons in baseball is simply remarkable. We are undoubtedly witnessing one of the greatest players of all time.
Dodgers starter Clayton Kershaw has been out since July 24 with a lower back strain. He’s slated to throw a three-inning simulated game in Pittsburgh on Monday, per Bill Plunkett of the Orange County Register. Plunkett adds that if all goes well, the earliest Kershaw could return is August 31 against the Diamondbacks, but September 1 is more likely against the Padres.
Kershaw, 29, hit the disabled list on a pace to win his fourth Cy Young Award. He’s 15-2 with a 2.04 ERA and a 168/24 K/BB ratio in 141 1/3 innings.
The Dodgers have managed just fine without Kershaw. The club is 19-4 since July 24. At 87-35, the Dodgers own baseball’s best record, well ahead of the second-best Astros at 76-48.
Last week, Tigers second baseman Ian Kinsler was ejected from a game against the Rangers after giving home plate umpire Angel Hernandez a look after a pitch was thrown outside for a ball. Kinsler was apparently unhappy with calls Hernandez had made earlier. Manager Brad Ausmus, too, was ejected.
After the game, Kinsler said that Hernandez “needs to find another job.” He added, “…he needs to stop ruining baseball games.”
Kinsler was fined by Major League Baseball for his remarks, Mlive’s Evan Woodbery reports. According to Ausmus, the fine levied on Kinsler was the largest one he’s seen in nearly 25 years in baseball. Kinsler said, “I said what I felt and what I thought. If they take offense to that, then that’s their problem.” Ausmus said, “To single out one player as a union is completely uncalled for.”
As Ashley noted on Saturday, the umpires wore white wristbands to protest “escalating attacks on umpires.” The umpires agreed to drop their protest on Sunday after commissioner Rob Manfred agreed to meet with the umpire union’s governing board, Gabe Lacques of USA TODAY Sports reports.