#72 - MARK TRUMBO, 1B
The heavy metal king of hot and cold grew up an Angels fan, at age sixteen he was for the '02 world champions along with you and me like every other suburban kid of the OC. His threats to go to college lowered his draft pick to the 18th round but he signed with the Angels in August of 2004. Far from being a hyped prospect, he was underrated at every level, criticism about his defense and strikeout numbers brought the naysayers to the forefront and was accepted as sad gospel by the willing ears of fans disappointed with the hype surrounding Dallas McPherson and Brandon Wood.
With an injured Kendrys Morales unavailable for the 2011 season, Mark Trumbo used the opportunity of playing time granted him to prove just about everyone on planet earth wrong. He played in 149 games, batted .254 with a .768 OPS and an OPS+ of 114, smashing 29 home runs and 31 doubles, all of them unexpected.
In 2012 Albert Pujols took over at 1B and Trumbo juggled 66 starts in LF, 31 in RF, 16 at 1B, 22 at DH and 8 inadvisable and never to be repeated starts at 3B (although he played superior defense for a whole game there one time, including a great barehanded catch and throw to 1B on an infield grounder - during Jered Weaver's no-hitter). He had his best season, making the All Star Team before turning ice cold in August and September, but still managed 32 HR and a 124 OPS+.
With an ailing Pujols playing gimpy, Trumbo began his third straight season of over 143 games - playing in all but three contests in the 2013 season. He started 114 of those games at 1B. From a player who was mocked by prospect reports for terrible defense, not only was he not a liability, he was a reliable presence on the field.
But when it comes to Mark Trumbo, the discussion is really about power. Few Angels have ever had his bat. 95 home runs in three seasons (he debuted late in the 2010 season with no impact in a few games) ranks him 17th on the all time Angels HR list - will he be around in 2014 to crack 100 as an Angel?.
His .469 Slugging Percentage is tied for 8th best in club history for Angels with more than 1,500 PA. He bests Vladimir Guerrero's 1 HR per 18.7 At Bat with a Homer in every 18.1 AB. His On Base Plus Slugging of .768 ranks 22nd for the club.
RBIs are not a great measure of a player's ability because they rely on too many factors that involve teammates getting on base prior to a single player driving them in. But when using Plate Appearances as a measure of time and opportunities, we can note that in 1,853 PA as an Angel, Mark's 284 RBI are two more than Rod Carew drove in over 3,570 Plate Appearances under the Halo. His 181 Extra Base Hits ranks as one more than Carew hit as an Angel.
Whether or not he is traded for pitching this offseason, he will begin 2014 a 28-year old slugger who has stayed healthy despite maddening slumps and kept his cool, checked his ego and produced during sizzling hot streaks of raw power. Hot or cold, here or gone, he will rank a Top 100 Angel for quite some time.