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This is the real time-to-put-up deal. In this span when Harper was slugging .699 and hitting .341, the Angels’ 20-year-old star, Mike Trout, hit .269 with just nine RBI as his team eventually was eliminated.
Who would you rather have...Harper or Trout?
That line in #3 is real crap though, selective endpoints, quoting RBI from a leadoff guy and blaming Trout
and never reach the performance level that Trout has already demonstrated. Trout, on the other hand, doesn't need to improve at all and he's Willie goddammed Mays.
Regarding the injury projection, who knows? If you're really clairvoyant about athlete injuries, you should be making millions.
Barry Bonds has a legitimate case for best player of all time, and he only pulled it off 3 times in a long career, and those were his Balco Super Steroid Barry years. Alex Rodriguez has done it once. Albert Pujols has never done it. Unless you're convinced Trout will be the best player in the history of the game, you shouldn't expect 10+ WAR seasons as his baseline.
The argument that Trout is more likely to hurt himself running makes no sense to me. Have you ever seen Harper play? He is downright reckless at times.
I also wouldn't be surprised if he has back issues if he isn't super vigilant about it, with that swing.
I've got to say, I love that this is a conversation worth having. There really haven't been two guys that came up at the same time with this kind of ceiling since Mays and Mantle, and that's just plain amazing.
Regarding the base stealing, is there solid evidence that base-stealers are less durable? Pierre, Damon, Ichiro, Bourne are modern guys who steal plenty without injury trouble. Also, Trout is going to be at 40 dingers very shortly, so they'll move him to third in the order and any effect will be blunted.
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