Angels phenom Mike Trout has a good shot at capturing both MVP and Rookie of the Year honors in the American League. He’d be the first do it since Ichiro Suzuki in 2001, and Ichiro was 27 years old at the time. Trout just turned 21.
Now for something even more mind-boggling. From the great Sam Miller of Baseball Prospectus:
WAR isn’t a perfect measurement of a player’s production, but what statistic is?
Trout has a league-leading .343 batting average, a league-leading 182 OPS+, a league-leading 39 stolen bases and a league-leading 95 runs scored, and that’s with missing most of April. Oh, and he has also robbed three homers. No matter how you slice it, this is spectacular stuff from the Anaheim youngster.
And he has another 41 games to pile the numbers on.
The White Sox have reportedly picked up first baseman Yonder Alonso from the Indians, according to Stadium. The return for Alonso is expected to be nothing more flashy than a “fringe prospect,” though the minutiae of the deal is still pending a formal announcement from both teams.
Alonso, 31, inked a two-year deal with the Indians during the 2017 offseason. His first campaign with the club yielded a modest .250/.317/.421 batting line, 23 home runs, .738 OPS and 0.7 fWAR in 574 PA. The real boon for the White Sox may not be a passable veteran bat, however, but something more intangible — like Alonso’s clout with his brother-in-law and highly-coveted free agent slugger, Manny Machado.
While Alonso’s 2018 output represented a significant decline from the career-best numbers he posted in 2017, he’s still a solid contributor at the plate and, more importantly, slated to remain under team control for the next two years with just $8 million owed in 2019 and a $9 million option in 2020. As MLB.com’s Anthony Castrovince notes, the $17 million the Indians just erased from their payroll should give them enough room to accommodate the contracts for right-handers Trevor Bauer and Corey Kluber — a bonus regardless of what they happen to get in the trade.