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Mike Trout, Justin Upton nearing home run milestones

Anaheim could be Sparta in 2020

MLB: JUL 26 White Sox at Angels

If we get a baseball season in 2020, we could see a pair of home run milestones by Angels outfielders this year.

Mike Trout has 285 career home runs, and needs 15 to pass Tim Salmon atop the Angels all-time homer list. That would also make him the first Angels player ever with 300 home runs.

But there have been a few to reach these round-number milestones while with the Angels, even if some or most of their career home runs came elsewhere. Justin Upton could be the latest, sitting on 298 home runs.

Upton has 49 home runs in his two years and a month with the Angels, and with two more could be the 149th player in MLB history to hit 300. He’ll have to contend with Evan Longoria (297 homers) and Chris Davis (295), who are closing in on the milestone as well.

Nice, round numbers

Only one player has hit his 300th career homer while with the Angels. That was catcher Lance Parrish, on August 15, 1991 in Minnesota against Scott Erickson and the Twins. Parrish played four of his 19 seasons with the Angels, hitting 64 home runs from 1989-92. His 61 home runs as a catcher is tied for second-most in franchise history, behind only the 75 by Mike Napoli.

That was a heavy milestone weekend for the Halos in Minnesota. One night before Parrish reached 300, Dave Winfield hit his 400th home run. Winfield played parts of two seasons with the Angels (1990-91), and hit 47 home runs, including this milestone shot off Twins left-hander David West.

It was a homecoming for Winfield, who was born in St. Paul and played both baseball and basketball at the University of Minnesota.

“Three-ninety-nine sounds like something you’d purchase at a discount store,” Winfield told Robyn Norwood of the LA Times. “Four hundred sounds so much better.”

There were some bigger milestones with the Angels. The first, and most notable, was Reggie Jackson, who hit his 500th home run at home on Sept. 17, 1984, against future Angels pitching coach Bud Black, then of the Royals.

Jackson became the 13th member of the 500-homer club. Now, there are 27 members, including Albert Pujols.

Pujols also hit his 500th home run in Anaheim, on April 22, 2014 against Taylor Jordan and the Nationals. He followed that up three years later, hitting a grand slam for his 600th home run on June 3, 2017 against Ervin Santana and the Twins. Pujols was the ninth member of the 600-homer club.


Near misses

Mo Vaughn ended 2000 with 299 career home runs and four years remaining on his Angels contract. But he missed all of 2001 with an arm injury and was traded that December to the Mets, so no milestone in Anaheim.

Andres Galarraga ended his career with the Angels in 2004, and hit one home run in his seven games with them. That was his 399th career home run, hit on the final Friday of the season. He only played in one game the rest of the weekend, going 0-for-3 Sunday to end his season and career one homer shy of 400.

Others were relatively close. Torii Hunter had 297 career home runs at the end of 2012 when the Angels didn’t pursue him in free agency, and Hunter hit 56 more homers in his final three years. Steve Finley ended 2005 with 297 career home runs, but also finished his age-40 season and was terrible with the Angels (.222/.271/.374) so they traded him that December for Edgardo Alfonzo, who was somehow even worse (5-for-50 with the Halos).

Other near misses were on the other side. Eddie Murray when he came to the Angels in 1997 already had 501 home runs, and hit three more with Anaheim in his final season. Raul Ibañez had 300 home runs on the nose when he signed with the Angels before the 2014 season, and would hit three more for them in an otherwise forgettable 57 games (.157/.258/.265).

So we have Upton and possibly Trout reaching home run milestones this season, and with Pujols at 656 home runs and signed through 2021, perhaps an outside chance at yet another milestone. Or maybe he’ll make the near miss category.