Do you assume Mike Trout ever has regrets?
Again in 2019, Trout signed a monstrous 12-year, $426.5 million extension with the Angels that made him by far the highest-paid participant in MLB historical past. On the time, the two-time AL MVP (Trout received his third in 2019) was coming into his ninth 12 months within the league, and had skilled postseason baseball simply as soon as — when his top-seeded Angels acquired swept within the 2014 ALDS.
And but, he dedicated to staying in Anaheim for what may become the remainder of his profession, as his contract takes him via his age-39 season.
Since that 2014 playoff look, the Angels have had only one successful season (2015), and haven’t even sniffed October baseball. However that hasn’t stopped Trout from popping out day by day, enjoying the sport he loves for the town he loves, and, for probably the most half, probably not saying a phrase about his group’s struggles. To be honest, he was the one who signed the deal. And he has 426.5 million causes to be okay with it. However in some unspecified time in the future, you do must surprise: Does Mike Trout have any regrets?
Trout will undoubtedly go down as one among, if not, the best common season baseball participant of all time. He has been the unquestioned finest participant in baseball since he entered the league. However to be thought-about a “best of all time,” you actually need to have some postseason expertise, and furthermore, some postseason excellence in your resume. And in Trout’s lone postseason look, he hit a mere 1-12 (.083) with one solo residence run and three walks. Not precisely spectacular.
In fact, it’s probably not his fault he hasn’t had extra alternatives to enhance upon these numbers. Getting into this season, Trout had a profession WAR of 76.1. That had him sitting at seventy fifth on the all-time checklist, forward of greater than 100 present members of the Nationwide Baseball Corridor of Fame, and plenty of extra future inductees. The one energetic participant forward of Trout in profession WAR is 42-year-old Albert Pujols. Trout is just 30.
And but, the Angels are within the midst of one more disappointing season, will in all probability must commerce fellow famous person Shohei Ohtani, and may very well be headed in direction of an much more disappointing future.
And this hasn’t even been the worst of it for Trout this season.
On Wednesday, it was reported that Trout was affected by a uncommon again situation that might have an effect on him for the remainder of his profession. The situation, often called costovertebral dysfunction within the T5 vertebrae, may drive Trout to fully alter his method to coaching, preparation, and even his work within the outfield. There’s no purpose to invest on how this might have an effect on Trout’s efficiency shifting ahead — in an ideal world, it wouldn’t change a factor. However a lower than 100% Trout, whereas nonetheless a dominant baseball participant, would put the Angels’ probabilities at making one other postseason run even decrease than they already have been. And that has to get Trout slightly apprehensive.
Simply 185 gamers in MLB historical past, who’ve performed over 10 seasons within the league, performed with one group their total profession. Solely 55 of these guys have made it to the Corridor of Fame. If Trout finishes out his contract in Anaheim — and he hasn’t mentioned something but that will make us assume in any other case — he could be becoming a member of this unique membership. And if the Angels proceed to wrestle, he may very well be doing it ringless.
In that case, he could be becoming a member of an much more unique membership. An inventory of gamers like Carl Yastrzemski, Tony Gwynn, Ernie Banks, and Ted Williams, who toughed it out with one franchise their total profession, but have been by no means capable of convey residence a World Sequence trophy.
Trout may all the time drive a commerce (however that doesn’t appear very possible). Or he may play out his contract after which leap to a contender in his age-40 season to win a hoop (that’s a risk). However with the trajectory his group is on proper now, it’s fairly obvious that postseason baseball will proceed to be performed with out the best participant of the final decade. And in some unspecified time in the future, you do must surprise what may have been.
What if Trout didn’t signal that extension in 2019? What if he as a substitute joined a perennial contender and performed in a number of World Sequence? How early in his profession may he put himself on the Mount Rushmore of baseball greats if he had only one World Sequence ring beneath his belt?
The excellent news for Trout is he nonetheless is just 30. You by no means know what sort of bundle the Angels may get for Ohtani in the event that they determine to commerce him. And perhaps, within the again half of his profession, one thing will click on for the Angels. However for now, we get to proceed to ask the questions of what may have been. And naturally, probably the most urgent query of all of them: Does Mike Trout have any regrets?