Never Doubt The Trout Regardless Of The Count

Updated: May 2, 2017

The Angels have a certain someone that seems to rarely fail. What is every bit as remarkable about this certain someone is that even when he does do so, he does not focus on the lows. It is a part of the individual that never gets spoken of. Even when centerfielder Mike Trout does not have a spoonful of success, he shakes it off as would one do with a fly trying to sneak its way into a bucket of potato salad.

Trout faced the Houston AstrosChris Devenski twice during a recent road trip. In his first at-bat Trout did not fare too well against the right-handed reliever. Devenski won the first battle by attaining a strikeout. However, the next time around was a little different. Even though in both at-bats the Angels’ superstar was down in the 0-2, Trout adjusted the second time. As a result, the five-tool athlete drove a ball over the wall in left field for a solo shot.  It is a pitch Devenski probably does not like to be reminded of.

What is funny is that when Trout was asked about the first at-bat a few before that second one, Trout responded with the following.

“‘Did we face this guy the other day?’” he asked.

When informed of what occurred, Blue Jays’ reliever Joe Smith let out a laugh. It was a laugh, though, chock full of understanding. Smith was a teammate of Trout’s for nearly three seasons, so he grasps Trout’s mannerisms more than the average joe.

“‘If he loses, it’s on to the next game,’ Smith said. ‘He’s the most competitive person in the world.’”

When Toronto came to the Big A for a four game set earlier this year a similar tune was played. Although this time around Smith actually beat Trout in the two chances he had against his former teammate. Smith further explained Mike’s competitive drive and why he was glad Trout did no damage against him in that series.

“‘When he beats you, he’ll never let you hear the end of it,’” Smith said.

It is not like Trout is not ready for what opposing pitchers like to throw in certain situations. Trout is more than adept at making in-game adjustments. He also regularly asks coaches about their input in a particular scenario. While this all helps, what also aids is that the New Jersey native does not let the fear of failure get to his head at all. The numbers back it up.

Pedro Moura of The Los Angeles Times sheds light on these numbers in a recent article. He describes most major league hitters to be worthless when down 0-2. So far this year hitters are batting a paltry .161 accompanied by a .188 OBP. In the 700 0-2 counts Trout has had in his career he has batted .231 with a .274 OBP. It is scary to think about. It suggests that Trout does better in those kind of at-bats than some major leaguers do in more favorable counts. It is impossible to fathom, so simply admiring it is all that can really be done.

Number 27 constantly emphasizes that he is not trying to do too much in those counts. Due to being more relaxed than most are, it perfectly sums up why Trout is a tier above the others in baseball. He just continues to play and does not let things get to him mentally. There’s not much more than can be wanted from a ballplayer. It is precisely why one should never doubt the Trout.

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