Los Angeles Angels star Mike Trout left Thursday’s blowout loss to the Houston Astros early after taking a pitch directly in the elbow. He stayed in for a short while, but was later removed from the game with an elbow contusion. The decision to pull him was likely made due to the score at the time, as both he and Joe Maddon have stated that he should be fine moving forward.
The pitch in question that led to Trout getting hit was certainly a strange one. From the footage, it does appear that Trout potentially leaned into the ball, but doing so with his elbow would be an unwise move. Usually, a player who leans in for a pitch will do so with their back or hips to hit a more protected area.
Trout denied that he was leaning into it, saying he simply misread the pitch, according to Rhett Bollinger of MLB.com:
“Was I trying to get hit by the pitch? No. I was trying to hit,” Trout said. “It was weird. To be honest, I thought it was a slider. Then, at the last second, tried to get out of the way and when I turned my head, my elbow flew out. It just hit my elbow.”
Trout is also hoping that he’ll be able to play on Friday after getting some treatment on the contusion.
“It’s getting better,” Trout said. “I’m getting treatment and hopefully I’ll be in there tomorrow. It didn’t feel like it hit any of the pad. But after watching the replay, the pad helped me out a lot.”
The Angels are likely hoping to avoid any missed time from their superstar, especially as they face other injuries at all parts of the field. They already have two outfielders, an infielder, and a catcher on the Injured List.
In addition, the team will need a bounce back performance against the Astros to avoid slipping back to .500 after reaching 9-6 just two games ago. They lost 8-2 on Thursday, as starting pitcher Alex Cobb really struggled to get any rhythm going.
Jose Quintana discusses improved performance
While Cobb underperformed on Thursday, Jose Quintana had his best outing of the season on Wednesday against the Texas Rangers. Although it came in a loss, he was exactly the player Maddon was hoping for when he signed Quintana. The goal for the Angels now becomes getting all six of their starters in a rhythm simultaneously.