Mike Trout's girth doesn't faze boss
TEMPE, Ariz. -- Mike Scioscia's daily media briefing Tuesday might as well have been sponsored by Jenny Craig.
Los Angeles Angels center fielder Mike Trout, the 2012 American League Rookie of the Year and runner-up to Miguel Cabrera in the MVP race, weighed a reported 241 pounds upon arrival at spring training -- about 10 to 15 pounds heavier than last season.
Mike and Mike in the Morning
Angels manager Mike Scioscia talks about Mike Trout's weight, the addition of Josh Hamilton, plays at the plate and more.
The increased bulk has earned Trout some jibes on Twitter and sparked some concern among fantasy owners that his speed game might suffer as a result. It has also been a topic of discussion among bloggers and sports talk radio callers in Southern California.
But his manager is unfazed. As Scioscia told reporters at Tempe Diablo Stadium on Tuesday morning, Trout's young body is still evolving.
"He's 21 now, so the weight is not a concern,'' Scioscia said. "You don't know how much a body is going to fill out. He's running great. He feels great. He's not too far from where he played last year. Everything he has is muscle. His body [composition] is still terrific, from what the trainers tell me.
"If a player is 28 and he comes in a little heavier, it's probably more of a concern. These young kids in our lineup are still growing -- particularly the kids from Latin America. They'll start to fill out quicker because of diets and strength and conditioning.''
Trout addressed the issue during his introductory news conference with teammates Josh Hamilton and Albert Pujols on Valentine's Day. He said he typically loses 5-10 pounds in spring training, so he made it a point to come to camp a little heavier.
"I know where I need to be to start the year,'' Trout said.
Trout will be a pivotal player in the Angels' bid to rebound from a disappointing season and make the playoffs. Last year, despite adding Pujols to the lineup through free agency, the Angels started 7-15 and never fully recovered. They finished third in the AL West at 89-73 and fell short of the postseason.
Trout hit .326 with 30 homers, 129 runs scored, 49 stolen bases in 54 attempts and a 10.7 wins above replacement despite getting off to a slow start because of illness and injury. He dealt with a bout of shoulder tendinitis and a virus that sapped him physically for much of spring training.
"Mike had this viral thing and he was 20 pounds lighter. I wish some of us could get it,'' Scioscia joked. "I'd take that 20-pound virus for a couple of days. But it hasn't come around my way yet.''