If you somehow missed the news, I hate to be the one to break it to you: Mike Trout will be getting surgery to repair a UCL tear in his left thumb. He is on the disabled list for the first time in his historic career, and is expected to be out at least six weeks. How much are the Angels going to miss with Trout gone?
Hint: it’s a lot.
From 2012-2016, Trout put up an insane 47.1 fWAR. That’s the 30th best five year stretch in baseball history. Keep in mind, IT WAS TROUT’S FIRST FIVE FULL SEASONS.
Let’s look at the rest of the players to put up 47.1 WAR in a five season stretch (some players have done it multiple times):
- Babe Ruth (best stretch: 61.2 WAR)
- Barry Bonds (best stretch: 54.9 WAR)
- Ted Williams (best stretch: 53.4 WAR)
- Rogers Hornsby (best stretch: 52.2 WAR)
- Honus Wagner (best stretch: 51.1 WAR)
- Willie Mays (best stretch: 50.0 WAR)
- Lou Gehrig (best stretch: 48.3 WAR)
- Mickey Mantle (best stretch: 48.2 WAR)
- Ty Cobb (best stretch: 47.3 WAR)
- Joe Morgan (best stretch: 47.3 WAR)
Trout has already established himself as a Hall of Famer, he just needs to play for 10 seasons until he’s a lock. Only ten other players have put up a stretch comparable to Trout’s, regardless of age and experience, and nine of them are in the Hall of Fame (sorry, Barry).
It’s not a surprise that Trout draws comparisons to some of the greatest outfielders of all time. After all, he’s on a legendary track (see image below, from Fangraphs):
Yup, that’s Mike Trout in blue. At age 25, Mantle was the only one near him, and that’s if Trout doesn’t play another game this season. These guys are legends, and are having trouble keeping up with Trout.
The Angels are screwed without Mike Trout, but how screwed are they?
If you remove Mike Trout’s numbers from the Angels’ team totals, the team has a slash line of .226/.297/.344. That’s… awful.
For comparison, this year’s Padres are slashing a combined .221/.288/.367. The Angels are on par with the Padres without Mike Trout.
Sorry Angels fans, and also fans of greatness in the making, but we may have to wait awhile for a living Hall of Famer to come back.
PS: check out @ZRoriginal on Twitter if you like the featured image.