Mike Trout provides troubling update on injury progress and return to LA Angels

New York Yankees v Los Angeles Angels
New York Yankees v Los Angeles Angels / Brandon Sloter/GettyImages

Unlike his teammate Anthony Rendon, whose salary this season trumps Mike Trout's by almost $150K, Trout is a guy who really wants to play baseball, and he really wants to play Angels baseball. He's had to weather a lot over the past few years in terms of injury, starting with a hand fracture last season that he suffered in July (it eventually kept him out for the rest of the season).

He came back in 2024 after shooting down a perennial line of questioning — whether or not he would accept a trade away from Anaheim — ready to contribute to his team and to fight to see his first postseason in 10 years.

But Trout's getting a little older and has been playing hard for 14 years, and only 29 games into the season (29 games that gave fans a lot of reason be optimistic) he went down again with a meniscus tear, which he underwent surgery for in early May. He was visibly upset when he spoke to reporters immediately following the injury and wore the dejected expression of a guy who wants to be on the field every day but just keeps running into problems.

Unfortunately, it hasn't gotten any better. He's been on the 10-day IL since April 30 but hasn't been making any notable progress. Sam Blum of The Athletic reported that Trout acknowledged Trout was recovering slowly, hasn't started running yet, and seems to be focusing on small, incremental exercises.

Mike Trout's update on meniscus tear doesn't make it sound like he'll be back with the Angels anytime soon

The Angels are currently fourth place in the AL West, 13.5 games behind the division-leading Mariners and 11.5 games out of the last Wild Card spot. It would take a miracle for them to get back into playoff contention, even with more than half a season left to play. The Angels have certainly proven that one or even two superstars can't make a team, but their offense currently ranks 21st, per FanGraphs' offensive metrics; they're 17th overall in team batting average and 25th in overall fWAR. Those are stats that Trout would certainly have provided a nice boost for if he'd remained healthy.

Although the postseason is far from the Angels' view, Trout's protracted injury is just another demoralizing storyline for a team that hasn't been able to raise its head above second place in the division since 2017, and it's increased speculation about a potential trade (subscription required) that would send Trout away from Anaheim.

The Angels desperately need him to get better and return to the lineup, but there's not a lot of hope of that on the horizon at the moment.