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Saturday, January 18, 2020

MLB releases statement clearing Angels’ Mike Trout after HGH accusation

Major League Baseball and the union issued a joint statement on Friday afternoon saying that no player has ever received an exemption to use Human Growth Hormone, reacting to a rumor about Angels All-Star Mike Trout that seeped into social media a day earlier.

While not using Trout’s name, the statement was clearly a reaction to a Thursday Instagram post – that was deleted and then retracted – alleging that Trout had received MLB approval to use HGH because of a thyroid condition.

MLB grants about 100 Therapeutic Use Exemptions (TUEs) every year, allowing players to use otherwise banned substances for legitimate medical purposes. The vast majority of them are stimulants that are prescribed to treat Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder.

So, anyone have any wild and unsubstantiated rumors they wish to make up now?


QLE Posted: January 18, 2020 at 12:39 AM | 14 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: mike trout, mlb, mlbpa, rumors

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   1. Walt Davis Posted: January 18, 2020 at 05:57 PM (#5917229)
Well, you're probably not going to be believe this, but a guy in a bar told me the Astros are stealing signs and relaying them to the batter by banging on a trash can.
   2. Sunday silence Posted: January 18, 2020 at 06:03 PM (#5917231)
I read that same thing on reddit!
   3. Ziggy is done with Dominican discotheques Posted: January 18, 2020 at 09:30 PM (#5917267)
I've got no place better to put this, so here it goes.

As I sometimes do, I was genuflecting before Mike Trout's B-R page, and noticed his extraordinary OPS+. So I decided to check some prominent players for OPS+ through age 27, and see how Trout does. I'm not a PI wizard, so this was just done by looking up a bunch of guys, and surely I missed some. But it's still illuminating:

OPS+ through age 27, select players

Ruth 213
Barnes 188
Cobb 182
Gehrig 179
Jackson 177
Trout 176
Foxx 175
Hornsby 174
Mantle 173
Pujols 167
O'Neill 167
Speaker 166
Lajoie 160
Collins 159
Mays 158
Kiner 157
Ott 156
Sisler 155
Aaron 153
Bonds 147
Wagner 146

Trout is ninth on this list, between Shoeless Joe and Jimmie Foxx. Three of the players ahead of him are 19th c. guys, and just how seriously you want to take Ross Barnes' play in the National Association is probably a matter of taste. Ruth is lightyears ahead of everyone, Williams is definitely second. And there's a big scrum from 173 to 179. Trout has a three point advantage over Mantle, and three points behind Gehrig.

I was surprised that a couple Pirates, Kiner and Wagner, ended up this low.

Aaron is about where I expected. His real talent was consistency. He was basically that good his entire career. (From 28 to 42 he had a 156 OPS+.) Trout is slightly more than halfway to Aaron's career WAR total.
   4. Walt Davis Posted: January 18, 2020 at 10:39 PM (#5917277)
Being a PI wizard only helps if you have a PI subscription ... not very useful if this is "wizardry." :-)

The official list (min 2500 PA)

The first guy you missed is Frank Thomas at a whopping 183. The vastly under-rated and oft-overlooked (by pretty much everybody including me) Johnny Mize at 174. And Musial at 171. That rounds out the top 15.
   5. Walt Davis Posted: January 18, 2020 at 11:03 PM (#5917280)
And from the list ... well, the downside comps for Trout are Thomas and Pujols who didn't age awesomely or becoming a drunk like Mantle. The other "risk" is that it seems that most guys who start really young seem to run out of gas "young." I won't be surprised if Trout has pretty much used it all up by 38.

It's a counting stat so obviously a function of playing time (age at debut, health, 162-game schedule) but the Rbat leader through age 27 is Foxx at 487 and Trout is 2nd at 471. Followed by Mantle, Cobb, Ott, Pujols, Gehrig, Hornsby, Ruth and Williams. Ruth is obviously the real leader here as he had about 2100 fewer PA than Foxx or Trout; Williams also 2000 PA behind. After Williams there's a gap of 41 runs to ARod.

WAR and WAA (at these ages for this caliber of player) are also counting stats. Trout is #1 in position player WAR at 72.5, 3.5 ahead of Cobb, 4.5 ahead of Mantle. Hornsby, ARod, Foxx, Griffey, Ott, Aaron and Speaker round out the top 10. Mays is 21 WAR and only 1300 PA behind Trout so he's probably at best tie Trout. Ruth the position player would have passed him if he'd gotten the PA. But adding Ruth's pitching WAR to his actual pos WAR still leaves him a couple of wins behind Trout.

Doing some quick comparisons, I think Trout then is (tied for) #2 all-time through age 27 in pos WAR/650 to Ruth. (Not necessarily the top 5)

Ruth 10.4
Trout 8.94
Williams 8.92
Hornsby 8.7
Mays 8.3

Next time you're at the sabermetric bar you can probably win a drink or two with this one -- who had more bWAR through age 27, Andruw Jones or Ted Williams? PT and defense put Andruw by 0.6 WAR. Santo and Brett are too if you think asking whether Andruw has more WAR is a dead giveaway.
   6. Walt Davis Posted: January 18, 2020 at 11:09 PM (#5917281)
And thanks to MLB for clearing Trout quickly enough that I can cancel my HGH order.
   7. BrianBrianson Posted: January 19, 2020 at 01:55 AM (#5917289)
Well, you're probably not going to be believe this, but a guy in a bar told me the Astros are stealing signs and relaying them to the batter by banging on a trash can.

The soothing music of banging on trashcans is important in the treatment of autism. People with autism often have a hard time reacting to unknown or unfamiliar situations, so letting them know what pitch is coming next is important for their mental health. Trust me, I am a doctor.
   8. bbmck Posted: January 19, 2020 at 04:19 AM (#5917293)
Since 2003 or 2004, the rest of MLB has the same number of 10+ position player WAR seasons as Mike Trout, since 2009 the rest of MLB has the same number of 9+ position player WAR seasons.

HR through 28th birthday:

322 - Alex Rodriguez
302 - Jimmie Foxx
299 - Eddie Mathews
294 - Ken Griffey Jr
282 - Albert Pujols

280 - Mickey Mantle
278 - Mike Trout
275 - Mel Ott
267 - Giancarlo Stanton
260 - Frank Robinson

Bryce Harper with 219 doesn't turn 28 until after the 2020 regular season. The Top 10 in career HR through their 28th birthday:

160 - Barry Bonds
253 - Hank Aaron
197 - Babe Ruth
322 - Alex Rodriguez
218 - Willie Mays

282 - Albert Pujols
294 - Ken Griffey Jr
162 - Jim Thome
171 - Sammy Sosa
260 - Frank Robinson

A healthy Mike Trout has a good chance to be 7th through 29th birthday on August 7th, he currently has 285, 6th Albert Pujols 319 and 7th Andruw Jones 309.

BB through 28th birthday since 1908, HR was also since 1908 but that doesn't affect the top of the leader board:

892 - Mickey Mantle
874 - Eddie Yost
819 - Mel Ott
782 - Jimmie Foxx
780 - Mike Trout

725 - Eddie Mathews
717 - Donie Bush
708 - Rickey Henderson
700 - Frank Thomas
684 - Bryce Harper

A healthy Mike Trout is guaranteed to be 5th or better through 29th birthday, currently with 803:

1003 - Mickey Mantle
969 - Eddie Yost
921 - Mel Ott
887 - Jimmie Foxx
836 - Eddie Mathews

Mike Trout played in 610 regular season games his team won through his 28th birthday, the 30th most since 1908, ahead of 36th Derek Jeter 604, T42nd Bryce Harper 595 will probably be in the Top 10.

804 - Mel Ott
800 - Andruw Jones
761 - Mickey Mantle
717 - Johnny Bench
704 - Robin Yount

701 - Jimmie Foxx
683 - Hank Aaron
677 - Al Kaline
676 - Freddie Lindstrom
669 - Edgar Renteria

15th Elvis Andrus 649 will be the active leader from the retirement of T12th Adrian Beltre 660 until/if Bryce Harper catches him.

Most playoff wins through 28th birthday:

56 - Derek Jeter
37 - Chipper Jones
36 - Andruw Jones
34 - Buster Posey
30 - Yasiel Puig

29 - Albert Pujols
28 - Carlos Correa
27 - Manny Ramirez
27 - Ryan Klesko
27 - Daniel Descalso

The rest of the "Core Four": Jorge Posada 8, Andy Pettitte 2 and Mariano Rivera 2. World Series game wins through 28th birthday:

21 - Joe DiMaggio
19 - Mickey Mantle, Derek Jeter, Yogi Berra
18 - Tony Kubek
15 - Gil McDougald
14 - Ross Youngs, Frankie Frisch
13 - Bobby Richardson, Stan Musial, Charlie Keller, Joe Gordon, Clete Boyer

All except Stan Musial played for New York based teams. Clinching game for the winning team through their 28th birthday: 338 position players. 40 of the 94 starting pitchers with Ralph Terry, Johnny Podres and Whitey Ford doing it twice. Rollie Fingers twice and 28 others in relief once, including Ken Holtzman who also started a clinching game.
   9. Sunday silence Posted: January 19, 2020 at 05:38 AM (#5917302)
Ruth 213
Barnes 188
Cobb 182
Gehrig 179
Jackson 177
Trout 176
Foxx 175

Its seems to me that Left handed batters had more of an advantage in the early days of baseball, as there was less LHP in the game. Of the players post 1900 at the top of that list only Foxx/Joe Jackson are RH (well trout too but you get the idea). And even the rest of the list has a lot of LH in the period 1900-50.

This goes back to timelining and how to evaluate these guys. I think its unfair to you know, assume Ruth wouldnt have weight training or to assume he wouldnt still be at the same 99th percentile of physical superiority.

BUt it is fair to impart modern knowledge and use it. So that the old timers would be facing more LHP, and perhaps better shifting, and better advance scouting.

Sorry to interrupt your HGH discussion, just an observation i wanted to make.
   10. TomH Posted: January 19, 2020 at 06:39 AM (#5917307)
OPS+ through age 27, select players

Ruth..... 213
Williams 195

And Williams' seasons went like this:
160 161 235 216 war war war 215

Add a few more 215s in there, and his pre-27 average is more like 202.

Also, Ruth's polo grounds splits were huge; his home OPS in 20-21 was about 1500 (!), even though the overall park factor was about average (to be fair, Fenway was not kind to him). A different environment, without the new lively ball, and maybe Babe "only" looks like tied with Ted, perhaps behind him, as the greatest hitter who ever lived.
   11. bbmck Posted: January 19, 2020 at 10:03 AM (#5917328)
Born since 1874 (Honus Wagner, Nap Lajoie both RHB), Age 23-32 and min 3000 PA:


1. Rogers Hornsby 186 vs Babe Ruth 218
2. Mike Trout 183 vs Ted Williams 193
3. Jimmie Foxx 172 vs Ty Cobb 192
4. Albert Pujols 171 vs Lou Gehrig 187
5. Frank Thomas 168 vs Stan Musial 173

10. Frank Robinson 164 vs Willie McCovey 162
15. Jeff Bagwell 159 vs Reggie Jackson 152
20. Mark McGwire 155 vs Elmer Flick 151
25. Mike Schmidt 150 vs Ken Griffey Jr 148
30. Kevin Mitchell 146 vs Sam Crawford 146

40. Rickey Henderson 141 vs Rod Carew 143
50. Orlando Cepeda 138 vs Will Clark 140
60. Jim Wynn 136 vs Goose Goslin 137
70. Jim Rice 134 vs Mo Vaughn 135
80. Ernie Banks 132 vs Dave Parker 132
90. Bobby Grich 129 vs Kent Hrbek 131

100. Gary Carter 128 vs Doc Gessler 130
125. Magglio Ordonez 125 vs Vic Wertz 126
150. Larry Hisle 123 vs Mack Jones 122
175. Joe Rudi 121 vs Hank Thompson 119
200. Donn Clendenon 119 vs Trot Nixon 116

In total 833 qualifying RHB with 496 with 100+ OPS+ and 500 LHB with 394 at 100+. Switch hitters is Mickey Mantle 188 and then Lance Berkman 148, 174 in total and 88 with 100+. For career RHB downshifts probably because they dominate the important defensive positions and need a lower OPS+ to remain a regular. But after L, L, L, B, L at the top of the list it's a pretty even mix.

Seasons qualified for the batting title for the Top 200 RHB from above at Age 33+:

Below 90 OPS+: 22
90-99: 42
100-109: 83
110-119: 60
120+: 213

Same for LHB:

Below 90 OPS+: 17
90-99: 30
100-109: 58
110-119: 73
120+: 219
   12. Gonfalon Bubble Posted: January 19, 2020 at 12:38 PM (#5917361)
The soothing music of banging on trashcans is important in the treatment of autism.

Yes, but Zack Greinke wasn't on the Astros until last year.
   13. Mefisto Posted: January 19, 2020 at 03:52 PM (#5917388)
@9: Jackson batted left handed.
   14. Mefisto Posted: January 19, 2020 at 03:54 PM (#5917390)
@5: If you give wartime credit, Williams is probably ahead of Trout on WAR/650 and probably on career WAR too. Those 3 seasons he missed are quite likely worth 10 WAR/year.

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