Los Angeles Angels superstar Mike Trout has been the undoubted best player in baseball for the better part of a decade. His dominance has led to eight All-Star appearances, eight Silver Sluggers, and three MVP’s, putting him on track to be one of the greatest players of all time when it’s all said and done.
However, the shortened 2020 season was somewhat of a down year, at least compared to his standards. His .281 batting average was his lowest since his rookie year, and the same goes for his .390 on-base percentage. An incredible .993 OPS was Trout’s worst since 2016.
Looking back, Trout attributed his struggles to a lack of comfortability at the plate. That has since changed, as he said he’s starting to feel comfortable again after a tough year, according to Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic:
“It’s going to sound crazy, but I’ve been fighting something at the plate for like the last year, year and a half,” Trout said. “Starting this year, I just kind of figured out what I was doing. Just getting back to where I can go up there and feel comfortable.
“I can do all these drills in the cage and it feels fine, it feels right. Then I get in a game, I add a leg kick and it’s not right. It’s kind of like a battle. I’ve kind of figured out some stuff in the last few days that really I’ve been struggling with the last year, especially last year, just fighting it.”
It was clear during the 2020 season that Trout was not 100% himself. It was reflected in MVP voting, where Trout finished fifth in the AL, his lowest finish since his rookie year when he did not receive votes.
If he is starting to regain confidence with his swing, it could be a scary sight in 2021. Trout will turn 30 in August, meaning he is still in the heart of his prime. At his best, he’s perhaps the greatest player to ever play the game.
He will also do his best to try and bring the Angels to the postseason for the first time since 2014, where he can get his first ever Playoff win.
Felix Pena to start season on Injured List
If the Angels are going to get a postseason bid, they’ll need to do so with an unfinished bullpen. At least to start the season, they’ll be without Felix Pena as he recovers from a Grade 1 hamstring strain. He could be out at least two-to-four weeks.