Angels outfielder Mike Trout continued to show why he deserves the ‘best player in baseball’ title in 2020.
Here at Halo Hangout, we are beginning our 2020 player reviews! It would be hard not to start with the almighty Mike Trout. Look for our reviews over the next few weeks as we find reasons for optimism for the upcoming 2021 season.
Mike Trout is the best player in the game of baseball and there should be no argument about it. While amazing talents like Dodgers outfielder Mookie Betts make headlines in October and have MLB fans considering otherwise, my statement still rings true. Mike Trout still has a potential claim to being one of the best players in baseball history if not the best.
Mike Trout played in 53 games for the Halos in 2020, posting a .281/.390/.603 slash line. He also contributed 2.6 WAR and a ridiculous 164 wRC+. Trout also saw his walk rate decline and his strikeout rate increase, something that isn’t ideal. We can just chalk it up to small sample size for now, but it is certainly something to monitor in 2021.
Trout still crushed baseballs in 2020, shown by a 99th percentile average exit velocity and a 97th percentile hard hit rate. He maintained basically every advanced statistic on the offensive side of things, but as was well-documented, he may have taken a step back in 2020 defensively. Trout graded out as a 1st percentile outfielder in terms of instinctual jump and was 36th percentile in outs above average (OAA).
Role in 2021
Mike Trout will continue to be the best player in the game in 2021. The hope is that he ultimately stays healthy and posts another epic year to continue his current illustrious run. He will continue to slot in as the starting center fielder for the Angels, but as he gets closer to age 30, expect him to receive more starts in left field and as a designated hitter. The Angels’ need him to be healthy all season if they want a chance to truly contend for the AL West title — a 60-game season last year could be all the help he needs. The Angels and Trout remain married for another decade and that will always be a good thing. Trout needs to get into the playoffs immediately, though.
This might be the easiest grade we give for our player reviews, but Mike Trout gets a clear-cut A+ from us here at Halo Hangout. Let’s continue to watch him thrive.