Mike Trout might not want the attention and often deflects praise to his teammates. But he also makes it awfully hard not write or talk about him like he’s the second coming of Mickey Mantle or Willie Mays or some combination of the two. The kid is fast. We knew that. Scouts put an 80 grade on his speed tool on a 20-80 scale. Well, Trout is using that tool to commit blatant thievery around MLB.
Trout stole three bases Monday night, all second base and against the Matt Cain/Buster Posey battery. With his criminal night, Trout passed Jason Kipnis for the AL lead in steals with 19. He has 86 fewer plate appearances than Kipnis. Tony Campana freakishly leads baseball with 24 stolen bags in just 151 PA but offers little else.
Trout has six home runs and a .323/.383/.511 line to go with the steals. The center field defense isn’t too shabby either. What does all of that mean? As a 20 year-old, Trout’s 3.1 fWAR (Fangraphs wins above replacement) makes him the eighth most valuable position player this season. Not bad if you like that kind of thing.
Trout’s three stolen base night was the first by an Angel since Devon White in 1987. He also stole my heart. And possibly my car keys, I haven’t looked in the couch yet, though.