The 2024 Los Angeles Angels are still built around superstar Mike Trout and star third baseman Anthony Rendon. However, those building blocks include three young budding stars in catcher Logan O’Hoppe, shortstop Zach Neto and first baseman Nolan Schanuel. Of the three, O’Hoppe appears the most poised for a breakout 2024 season.
O’Hoppe had a mixed bag of a 2023 season, but one that leaves plenty of hope for his future. In his first 16 games, O’Hoppe slashed .283/.339/.547 for an .886 OPS with six extra-base hits — four homers — in 59 plate appearances. But a torn labrum in his shoulder held him out for the next four months, as he didn’t make his return to the Majors until Aug. 18.
The remainder of the season was hardly bad for a rookie. He still managed an OPS of .759 with 10 homers in 140 plate appearances after his return. But his batting average saw a stark 70-point decline. Much of that figures to be bad luck, as his strikeout rate actually improved while his batting average on balls in play (BABIP) dropped over 100 points.
With an offseason of work under his belt and pitchers and catchers preparing to report within the next two weeks, O’Hoppe is feeling confident in where he’s at, more than he’s ever been entering a season, via the Angels Recap Podcast with Trent Rush:
“I feel really good. I wasn’t happy with how it went last year, especially at the end when I came back. So I’ve worked on that, and I’ve worked on it every day and I feel like I’m in a good place now. For the most part, it’s just timing and understanding how my body is moving and getting in good positions where I can feel like I can be successful. I never feel like I’m at the end of the road, and I don’t think I’ll ever feel that way in my career, but I’m in a really good spot right now. I feel confident in what I’m doing. I’m really excited to keep going forward, and I’ve never felt more prepared or ready for a year than this one.”
O’Hoppe having a breakout season would drastically raise the Angels’ ceiling. As it stands, five of the Angels’ eight position player Opening Day starters are either in their first two MLB seasons — O’Hoppe, Neto and Schanuel — or injury-prone — Trout and Rendon — leaving lots of room for variance.
The Angels felt confident they were getting a surefire star in O’Hoppe when they traded Brandon Marsh for him back in 2022. Now, in 2024, that may be coming to fruition.
Angels win arbitration case against José Suarez
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