MLB.com Columnist

Lyle Spencer

Trout's latest star turn evokes legendary Hall of Famer

Huge game vs. Yanks from reigning AL MVP continues Mantle comparisons

Trout's latest star turn evokes legendary Hall of Famer

ANAHEIM -- The Mickey Mantle comparisons persist and won't be going away any time soon. Mike Trout is the image of No. 7 in pinstripes, chiseled from the neck to the ankles, and he plays like the Yankees legend, crushing baseballs and running them down with blinding speed in center field.

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Lyle Spencer is a national reporter and columnist for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @LyleMSpencer. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Trout puts Angels on his back vs. Yankees

Trout puts Angels on his back vs. Yankees

ANAHEIM -- Mike Trout did it all on Monday night, turning in a couple of run-saving, highlight-reel catches and clubbing another home run while leading the Angels to a 4-1 win over the Yankees in Southern California.

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Alden Gonzalez and Bryan Hoch are reporters for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Trout of sight: Star robs 2 hits, slugs 20th HR

Trout of sight: Star robs 2 hits, slugs 20th HR

ANAHEIM -- The challenge came from bench coach Dino Ebel in the early stages of Spring Training. He told the Angels' outfielders to get used to playing shallow, because he felt they had the speed to get back on balls and because he wanted to continually take away the bloop singles. Ebel was talking to every outfielder on the 40-man roster, but really, he was talking to Mike Trout.

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Alden Gonzalez is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Gonzo and "The Show", follow him on Twitter @Alden_Gonzalez and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Angels mum on reported tension

ANAHEIM -- Tensions mounted between the Angels' front office and coaching staff over the weekend, according to a FOXSports.com report that said the sides were at odds over how to convey scouting information to the players.

Per the report, Angels general manager Jerry Dipoto expressed frustration with the coaches relying too heavily on "feel" rather than the statistical data presented to them. At least one coach "responded heatedly" to Dipoto in a meeting on Friday and Albert Pujols "challenged" the fourth-year GM in a separate meeting on Sunday, the report said.

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Alden Gonzalez is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Gonzo and "The Show", follow him on Twitter @Alden_Gonzalez and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Pujols up for one last Home Run Derby

Pujols up for one last Home Run Derby

ANAHEIM -- If Angels first baseman Albert Pujols is chosen for the All-Star Game, a growing possibility given his scorching hot month of June, he'd like to take part in the Gillette Home Run Derby.

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Alden Gonzalez is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Gonzo and "The Show", follow him on Twitter @Alden_Gonzalez and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Heaney, Nova set to square off in Anaheim

Heaney, Nova set to square off in Anaheim

Angels left-hander Andrew Heaney and Yankees right-hander Ivan Nova will both be making their second start of the 2015 season when they square off Tuesday in the second game of their clubs' three-game series at Angel Stadium.

Heaney, ranked the top prospect in the Angels' system by MLB.com, made his first start for the team June 24 and threw six excellent innings, holding the Astros to one run on four hits. Angels manager Mike Scioscia said it was the Heaney the team had hoped to see in Spring Training, when he didn't perform well enough to win a roster spot.

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David Adler is an associate reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @_dadler. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Keep Trout in lead before All-Star voting ends

With balloting over Thursday, Angels OF tops position; Pujols fifth at 1B

Keep Trout in lead before All-Star voting ends

ANAHEIM -- You can pretty much pencil Mike Trout's name into the American League's All-Star Game starting lineup, again -- via the 2015 Esurance MLB All-Star Game Ballot.

The Angels' superstar center fielder maintained his standing as the leading vote-getter among AL outfielders when the last ballot update was unveiled Monday, six days before All-Star Game starters are announced. Trout had 11,461,212 votes, more than a million more than Royals center fielder Lorenzo Cain and nearly three million more than Royals left fielder Alex Gordon, who remains in third place.

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Alden Gonzalez is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Gonzo and "The Show", follow him on Twitter @Alden_Gonzalez and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Morin poised to rejoin Angels' bullpen

Morin poised to rejoin Angels' bullpen

ANAHEIM -- Angels reliever Mike Morin returned to the team on Monday, one month and five days after going on the disabled list with a strained left oblique. The 24-year-old right-hander is done with his rehab assignment and is expected to be activated Tuesday or Wednesday.

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Alden Gonzalez is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Gonzo and "The Show", follow him on Twitter @Alden_Gonzalez and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Angels stun Mariners on wild pitch in 10th

Angels stun Mariners on wild pitch in 10th

ANAHEIM -- With the Mariners on the verge of getting out of a bases-loaded, no-out jam in the 10th inning on Sunday, reliever Tom Wilhelmsen threw a wild pitch that let Kole Calhoun race home with the winning run, giving the Angels a 3-2 walk-off win in the rubber game at Angel Stadium.

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Greg Johns is a reporter and David Adler is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Santiago adds to All-Star resume

Santiago adds to All-Star resume

ANAHEIM -- Hector Santiago, same as a start ago, said he's still looking forward to four days off over the All-Star break. Maybe he should start thinking about making alternate plans.

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David Adler is an associate reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @_dadler. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Street vehemently opposed to using closers early

Street vehemently opposed to using closers early

ANAHEIM -- Huston Street is a closer. With the Angels ahead of the Mariners, 4-2, in the ninth inning Saturday, he finished the game. Carson Smith is a closer; with the Mariners ahead of the Angels, 3-1, in the ninth inning on Friday, he had already pitched.

The Mariners used Smith in the eighth because it was the highest-leverage situation -- Mike Trout and Albert Pujols were due up. The Angels used Street for the final outs, because that's his job. Street likes it that way -- if his team tried implementing a season-long, leverage-based philosophy, he'd be gone.

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David Adler is an associate reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @_dadler. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Angels send Kubitza back to Triple-A

Angels send Kubitza back to Triple-A

ANAHEIM -- The Angels optioned third baseman Kyle Kubitza to Triple-A Salt Lake following Sunday's 3-2 win against the Mariners at Angel Stadium, with a corresponding move to come prior to Monday's series opener against the Yankees.

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David Adler is an associate reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @_dadler. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Richards leads way as Angels edge Mariners

Richards leads way as Angels edge Mariners

ANAHEIM -- Garrett Richards allowed just two runs over 7 2/3 innings on Saturday as the Angels topped the Mariners, 4-2, with help from Kole Calhoun's two-run homer at Angel Stadium.

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Greg Johns is a reporter and David Adler is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Calhoun's homer sets tone for Richards

Calhoun's homer sets tone for Richards

ANAHEIM -- A two-run lead isn't much, but with the way the Angels' offense has struggled this season, early breathing room for a starting pitcher can feel bigger than it looks on the scoreboard.

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David Adler is an associate reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @_dadler. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

For Pujols and Trout, class is always in session

For Pujols and Trout, class is always in session

ANAHEIM -- Albert Pujols was the first to spring off his perch on the Angels' dugout steps, just ahead of Mike Trout, who was just ahead of the rest of his teammates.

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David Adler is an associate reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @_dadler. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Shoemaker gaining velocity as timing improves

Shoemaker gaining velocity as timing improves

ANAHEIM -- The timing of Matt Shoemaker's delivery was back in sync on Friday night, his work in the extra two days he had before his start paying off. The Angels' still-middling offense just couldn't back him up.

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David Adler is an associate reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @_dadler. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Shoemaker takes hard-luck loss vs. Mariners

Shoemaker takes hard-luck loss vs. Mariners

ANAHEIM -- Taijuan Walker pitched seven innings of one-run ball and the Mariners' scuffling offense did just enough against the Angels' Matt Shoemaker to capture a 3-1 win at Angel Stadium on Friday night.

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Alden Gonzalez and Greg Johns are reporters for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Street excited to have 300 saves in reach

Street excited to have 300 saves in reach

ANAHEIM -- Angels closer Huston Street entered this weekend's series against the Mariners just five saves away from 300 for his career. It may not be 3,000 hits or 500 home runs, but it's a distinguished round number nonetheless. Only 26 players have reached the milestone since saves became an official stat in 1969.

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Alden Gonzalez is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Gonzo and "The Show", follow him on Twitter @Alden_Gonzalez and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Trumbo returns to Angel Stadium

Trumbo returns to Angel Stadium

ANAHEIM -- Mark Trumbo acknowledges that getting traded by the D-backs in midseason has been one of the bigger challenges in his baseball career, adjusting to a new Mariners club and settling into a new city and surroundings on the fly.

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Greg Johns is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @GregJohnsMLB, read his Mariners Musings blog, and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Angels remind Skaggs he won't return this year

Angels remind Skaggs he won't return this year

ANAHEIM -- They knew Tyler Skaggs was nearing his first bullpen session and they figured he'd start to get really excited, so just in case he had forgotten, the Angels' trainers and pitching coach Mike Butcher about a month ago gave the 23-year-old left-hander a reminder: You're not pitching this year, no matter what.

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Alden Gonzalez is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Gonzo and "The Show", follow him on Twitter @Alden_Gonzalez and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Angels host MLB Players Trust youth clinic

Angels host MLB Players Trust youth clinic

ANAHEIM -- At a hot, sunny Hart Park, Pharrell Williams' "Happy" was playing over the speaker system, and children were hitting volleyballs with baseball bats.

The volleyballs were part of a swing drill at one of the stations set up by the Players Trust's City Clinics program, which hosted a baseball clinic in Anaheim on Friday morning for athletes ages 6-16 from the Angels' Reviving Baseball in Inner Cities (RBI) program and other organizations. The City Clinics program was developed by Major Leaguers to promote baseball to underserved children in cities around the U.S., with pro players participating in the events.

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David Adler is an associate reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @_dadler. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Dipoto: Angels have to be 'patient' with bats

Dipoto: Angels have to be 'patient' with bats

ANAHEIM -- Andrew Heaney's impressive debut and Taylor Featherston's timely hit carried the day, but Wednesday's series-winning, 2-1, 13-inning victory over the Astros was also a steady reminder of the offensive troubles that continue to plague this Angels team.

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Alden Gonzalez is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Gonzo and "The Show", and follow him on Twitter @Alden_Gonzalez. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Fireballer Newcomb tabbed for Futures Game

Fireballer Newcomb tabbed for Futures Game

ANAHEIM -- Angels pitching prospect Sean Newcomb, drafted 15th overall last summer, has been selected to take part in the SiriusXM All-Star Futures Game in Cincinnati on July 12.

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Alden Gonzalez is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Gonzo and "The Show", follow him on Twitter @Alden_Gonzalez and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Angels acquire Winkler from Rays for Krauss

Club likes velocity, breaking ball from righty reliever, who will report to Double-A

Angels acquire Winkler from Rays for Krauss

ANAHEIM -- The Angels acquired right-handed reliever Kyle Winkler from the Rays in exchange for left-handed power hitter Marc Krauss on Thursday.

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Alden Gonzalez is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Gonzo and "The Show", follow him on Twitter @Alden_Gonzalez and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

On-the-job training continues for Featherston

Utility infielder delivers game-winning hit in 13th inning vs. Astros

On-the-job training continues for Featherston

ANAHEIM -- It has often been said, by outsiders and even his own manager, that Taylor Featherston's situation is not ideal.

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Alden Gonzalez is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Gonzo and "The Show", follow him on Twitter @Alden_Gonzalez and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Angels win on Featherston's single in 13th

Angels win on Featherston's single in 13th

ANAHEIM -- Taylor Featherston extended his hands on an outside-corner Chad Qualls slider and got just enough of it to hit a flare over the head of Astros first baseman Chris Carter, plating Erick Aybar and sending the Angels to a 2-1 win in 13 innings on Wednesday afternoon.

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Alden Gonzalez is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Gonzo and "The Show", follow him on Twitter @Alden_Gonzalez and listen to his podcast. Brian McTaggart is a reporter for MLB.com and writes an MLBlog, Tag's Lines. Follow @brianmctaggart on Twitter and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Fan pulls foul ball out of scrum, does a little dance

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Fan pulls foul ball out of scrum, does a little dance

You might think "immediately lunge like a madman in its general direction" or "just use the nearest available concession" would be the most prudent strategy for coming away with a foul ball. But you clearly haven't put as much thought into it as this Angels fan, who turned the souvenir scrum from a game of checkers among first graders into ruthless three-dimensional chess.

Sure, she seems non-threatening, cowering in fear as a foul ball lands in the row in front of her, content to preserve her own safety as some fans fought it out amongst themselves. Little did they know, she was just playing the long game, and the baseball would be hers before anyone knew what hit them:

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