Now Commenting On:

Pujols, Trout too valuable to be out of lineup

Pujols, Trout too valuable to be out of lineup

Pujols, Trout too valuable to be out of lineup
ANAHEIM -- This, as the Angels scratch and crawl to try to make the playoffs with only 20 games left, is no time for rest.

That applies to Albert Pujols, whose calf still hasn't improved to a level that would allow him to play first base but continues to be in the lineup as the designated hitter. And that applies to Mike Trout, the 21-year-old center fielder who has played every inning of every game since July 29, a span of 40 games entering Wednesday.

How much has Trout played? He didn't join the Angels until their 21st game of the season, yet he came into Wednesday ranked second on the team in plate appearances with 549, trailing only Pujols' 588.

But the Angels can ill-afford to give the potential American League's Most Valuable Player a day off.

"He's still a huge part of what we do," manager Mike Scioscia said. "I don't think there's any player in the league that's not a little tired from the length of the season. Even though you're a little tired, he's still doing a lot of things at a high level, and that's an important part of our team."

Pujols, meanwhile, has started 14 straight games at DH since returning from a sore right calf, batting .305 with a homer and nine RBIs. His running has improved, but not to a level that would allow him to play defense.

"He still has a governor on it," Scioscia said. "His stride looks a little easier from where it was 10 days ago, but not close to where it normally would."

Boys and Girls Club of America

©2014 MLBAM, LP. All rights reserved.

The following are trademarks or service marks of Major League Baseball entities and may be used only with permission of Major League Baseball Properties, Inc. or the relevant Major League Baseball entity: Major League, Major League Baseball, MLB, the silhouetted batter logo, World Series, National League, American League, Division Series, League Championship Series, All-Star Game, and the names, nicknames, logos, uniform designs, color combinations, and slogans designating the Major League Baseball clubs and entities, and their respective mascots, events and exhibitions. Use of the Website signifies your agreement to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy (updated May 24, 2013).

View MLB.com in English | En Español