Mike Trout is a baseball god. He has tried his best to single-handedly give the Angels victories over the past couple games, but the Rangers worked to outscore him. Even when the the Angels pitched in a bit, it wasn’t enough, and they were sent in a three game losing streak tail spin. Mike Trout most likely thought to himself "Alright. Guess I’m just going to have to take them down myself." At least that’s the impression you’d get from watching his bonkers day at the Big A, as the Angels crushed the Rangers and got a sorely needed victory.
Trout announced his epic day in the first inning, as he crushed a low, in-the-zone fastball and sent it into the right-center bleachers. That 1-0 lead would only last until the third, when Angels starter Andrew Heaney gave up an RBI single to Rougned Odor. Heaney looked great today, and the only other run he’d give up would be on a bases loaded HBP in the fourth. It was an outing we’ve grown used to seeing around these parts, but watching this youngster slice and dice opponents never grows old.
With the Angels down 1-2 in the bottom of the fourth, C.J. Cron took a Nick Martinez pitch and parked it in the left field bullpen area, tying the game up at two apiece. Erick Aybar would then give the Angels a 3-2 lead on a sac fly in the fifth. This was all to set up the verified Halo Blitz in the sixth. Conor Gillaspie walked to start the party, and then the Rangers lifted Martinez for Anthony Bass. Carlos Perez attempted a sac bunt, a beautiful one FYI, and a bad throw by Bass to first got passed the first baseman, and allowed Gillaspie to get to third, Perez at second. Daniel Robertson then hit a ball off of the pitcher’s leg, that ended up being an infield single, bases now loaded. Local folk hero Johnny Giavotella came up to the plate and singled up Gillaspie, because of course that’s what he did. This kid has got the goods when it comes to in-game heroics; there has to be ice in those veins, I just know it.
The inning was not over, however the best was yet to come. After a Kole Calhoun strikeout by reliever Sam Freeman, the Rangers went to their bullpen yet again, this time to call upon Spencer Patton to face Mike Trout. With the bases loaded. There are so many times where you see these moments that Mike Trout finds himself in, and you think of what the fantastical, sublime, storybook outcome would be. It’s a quick, momentary daydream, but it pushes all the right buttons in your brain. Then, he does it. In real life. And you don’t even know how to accept and take in all of the ecstatic joy that you’re feeling. Yes, Mike Trout knocked a grand slam into right-center, again, further cementing his status as a baseball god among us. The Angels now had 8 runs on the board, five of them from Mike Trout. I am not worthy.
The MLB MVP, and best baseball player in the known universe, Mike Trout would finish his day going 4-4, with 3 runs scored, five RBI and one walk. It’s his world, we’re just living in it. The Angels would tack some more runs on a three run double by Daniel Robertson that was turned into a de facto inside-the-park homer once a ball went by the catcher on a play at home. In the eighth, Erick Aybar would get an RBI single and Taylor Featherston would get an RBI double, and the Halos would have a score of 13-4. The Rangers would eventually do some stuff to get that score to 13-7, but they’re Texas, and who cares? Angels destroyed them and Mike Trout is a king by his own hand. That’s the main takeaway here, people.
They needed it, and we needed it, but the team needed this victory more, as it can hit the reset button on their recent greatness, stop the three game back slide, and finish up July stronger than ever. And they’re going to have to, because their upcoming series is against the Astros, their main roadblock to post-season, home field glory. Even better news? Houston already lost today, so the Halos gained a game back from them. Now they need to go into Texas and show those upstarts who’s in charge of this division.