It’s not fair to Baseball fans that Baseball’s greatest player plays for Baseball’s strictest dad. Mike Trout is one of the greatest we’ll see in our lifetimes, which is hard to fathom, because we’ve seen so many “once in a generation” talents already... okay, I suppose that depends on your age. Here’s the thing about age: Mike Trout is younger than you think. He’s younger than you can remember being, even. He’s 26 years old.
Mike Trout, he of the 1060 career hits, 207 career home runs, and career slugging percentage of .566 is 26 years old. He’s 26 years old.
MIKE TROUT IS 26 YEARS OLD.
There are no 26 year old Giants and the only player who’s younger than Mike Trout is Reyes Moronta. That’s right. Literally every other Giants player — including “prospect” Mac Williamson — is older than Mike Trout. Because Mike Trout is 26 years old.
Maybe he is the Once In A Generation Talent.
Meanwhile, his manager, Mike Scioscia, is the personification of summers spent scraping asbestos off ceilings to help your dad and grandpa renovate a house. He reads the ingredients on the back of a box of Ritz crackers shaking his head the whole time before finally saying, “I don’t agree with that.” He’s definitely someone who puts the server’s tip on the table at the start of the meal and subtracts from it if the service doesn’t meet his lofty standards. Mike Scioscia is the magazine at a dentist’s office. And yet, he’s been gifted the Once In A Generation Talent.
He’s been gifted Shohei Ohtani, the 23-year old who wanted nothing to do with the Giants when he finally sat down and looked at their 2017 performance. He’s a power pitcher and power hitter. He’s also 23 years old. Buster Posey’s first full season was his age-23 season. That was in 2010. So long ago. My god... we’re all gonna die.
But first, we’re going to watch the Giants try to compete against the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim, a name that’s still funny to think about. They started 13-3, the best record to begin a season in their franchise’s history. And then they ran into the Boston Red Sox, who simply tore them apart in every facet of the game. Don’t check the box scores unless you get off on statistical carnage. So, they’re looking to rebound.
The Giants are looking to rebound after a rough series in Arizona. They’ve shown themselves to be a competitive team despite not knowing how to hit a baseball. There’s no evidence the Giants are primed to get going on offense, but the way their pitching has been going means that they don’t have to do that much to make something positive happen. And with no pitchers hitting this weekend, they’ll simply find themselves in a few more scoring opportunities with a non-pitcher up in the situation. We’ll probably know who the DH will be as this story is published, but let’s assume it’s either Pablo Sandoval or Buster Posey, which, hey, is a good flashback to 2010... far better to go back just that far and not, say, 2002...
Hitter(s) to watch:
Mike Trout, of course. But also, Ohtani. He won’t pitch this series because of blister issues, but you’ve gotta wonder how good for blisters hitting can be. There isn’t less friction holding and swinging a bat or wearing batting gloves. Finally, and perhaps most importantly: Albert Pujols is 10 hits away from 3,000 for his career, which means there’s a non-zero chance he makes history over the weekend.
Pitcher(s) to watch:
The Angels’ closer is someone named Keynan Middleton. Curious to see what that’s all about.
Prediction: The Giants will have a breakout game on offense but they will still lose that particular game. Any win will be some tough, low-scoring affair and we’ll all marvel at how they pulled it off. Also: we will watch and be miffed that Shohei Ohtani didn’t choose to sign with the Giants in the offseason. Mike Trout will do something amazing, because he usually does.