Mike Trout has been down this road before. Having another outstanding season, but being overlooked for the MVP award for the fourth time in his career Trout finished second.
Mike Trout is a special player and that is a proven fact. He has put up eye-popping numbers in each of his first seven seasons in the majors. For his efforts Trout has earned two AL MVP awards and as mentioned before finished second four times. The only year he did not finish in the top two was last season where Trout missed seven weeks due to a torn ligament in his thumb.
Trout has been hurt by playing on a team that has not been a playoff time in six of the seven season he has played for the Angels. This is not supposed to have any bearing on whether he is the AL MVP, but it clearly does. As Trout had outstanding numbers once again this season, but was never really talked about as being an MVP.
If you ask Mike Trout individual awards are not a big deal, but is still unfortunate that voters don’t consider his body of work and not worry about how his team plays. If not for Trout the Angels would have been out of the playoff race much earlier than they were.
This is not to say that Mookie Betts of the Boston Red Sox was not deserving of the award. Betts had a great year and he helped lead the Red Sox to a World Series Championship. Betts received 28 of the 30 first place votes totaling 410 points. Trout received one first place vote and 24 second place votes and totaled 265 points. Betts hit .346 which won him the batting title. He also hit 32 homers and drove in 80 runs with 30 stolen bases and 129 runs scored. Betts also won the Gold Glove Award for right field.
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Trout’s numbers were also outstanding hitting .312 with 39 homers and 79 RBIs with 101 runs scored and 24 stolen bases which are pretty comparable to Betts. Trout however did not have the line-up around him that Betts had. If you stuck Trout in the Red Sox line-up his numbers would probably be even better than Betts especially since Trout was pitched around many times as evidenced with his league-leading 122 walks which included 25 intentional walks. In Boston if Betts was walked you stil had three or four other players who could pick up the slack.
Hopefully next season the Angels will be able to put things together again and challenge for the division which would allow Trout to play meaningful baseball and get some recognition. For now Trout will hopefully take some solace in being considered for the award despite being on a losing team.