Angels’ Mike Trout looks to get untracked in finale vs. Royals

Angels' Mike Trout looks to get untracked in finale vs. Royals


The Los Angeles Angels have two sluggers who have gone in opposite directions heading into the series finale against the host Kansas City Royals on Sunday afternoon

Shohei Ohtani connected for another home run on Saturday, his major-league-leading 23rd and his eighth during a season-best 14-game hitting streak. He is batting .462 (24-for-52) with 18 RBIs during that stretch.

Ohtani’s recent hot streak coincides with one of the worst slumps of Mike Trout’s career.

Before delivering a pair of hits Saturday for his first multi-hit game since May 29, Trout was hitting .125 with just one extra-base hit and 20 strikeouts in the 16-game span.

“We’re all seeing it,” Los Angeles manager Phil Nevin told Sports Illustrated. “It’s frustrating to Mike.”

“I’m just trying to get in a good position to hit,” Trout said. “Right now I’m not. I’m just searching too much right now.”

Opponents should not focus too long on Trout’s troubles. When his slumps end, they do so with a bang, such as in May 2018 when he snapped an 0-for-21 slide by hitting seven homers over his next 51 at-bats.

Nevin has considered giving Trout a day off but doesn’t want to miss the fireworks when Trout inevitably rebounds.

“It still feels good writing ‘Mike Trout’ in the lineup,” Nevin said. “I’ve seen this before. When he breaks out, he goes crazy. I know it’s coming.”

The Angels will send left-hander Tyler Anderson (3-1, 5.80 ERA) to the mound on Sunday to oppose right-hander Zack Greinke (1-6, 4.65)

The pair squared off on April 22 in Los Angeles in an 11-8 Royals‘ victory. Anderson went 5 1/3 innings, allowing six runs — five earned — on seven hits with one strikeout while Greinke surrendered four runs on seven hits in five frames

Anderson is 0-2 with a 4.44 ERA in four career starts against Kansas City. Salvador Perez did the most damage, hitting a homer and two doubles in 11 at-bats.

Greinke is 7-5 with a 3.58 ERA in 21 appearances (20 starts) against the Angels. He last defeated Los Angeles on Aug. 13, 2021, pitching seven shutout innings for the Houston Astros. His only win for the Royals against the Angels came in 2008

Trout and Hunter Renfroe, each with 25 at-bats against Greinke, combined for six homers and 16 RBIs against the 20-year veteran.

While struggling through a 10-game losing streak, which ended Saturday with Kansas City’s 10-9 victory over the Angels, the Royals managed just 10 hits in 69 at-bats with runners in scoring position while leaving 65 runners on

During Saturday’s comeback win, Kansas City had six hits in 10 RISP at-bats, all in the final three innings.

Making his major league debut, Samad Taylor played the role of the hero by delivering a walk-off single on Saturday.

“It’s awesome,” teammate Bobby Witt Jr. said. “It’s crazy how baseball works like that sometimes.”

“It was impressive for a lot of reasons,” Royals manager Matt Quatraro said

Kansas City has struggled to take advantage of bases-loaded situations.

When Witt doubled in the seventh on Saturday, it was his first bases-loaded hit of the season and just the 11th for the Royals in 47 at-bats

On Saturday, Kansas City managed three hits with the bases jammed, all during the final three innings. Witt had two such hits, driving in four as the club earned its first win against a team with a record above .500 since May 2.

— Field Level Media


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About the Author

Anthony Barnett
Anthony is the author of the Science & Technology section of ANH.