The child is cursed, or so the story goes. Mike Trout’s expertise is being wasted by the Angels, yada, yada, yada.

It’s an correct description of what’s occurred to one of the best participant in baseball during the last couple of seasons, besides right here we’re in mid-July, two weeks from the nonwaiver commerce deadline and the Angels are someway inside arm’s attain of a spot within the postseason.

This after forty six days on disabled record for Trout, who was activated Friday forward of the workforce’s first recreation again from the All-Star break, a 2-1 loss to the Tampa Bay Rays in 10 innings.

“We’re proper there within the wild card,” Trout stated.

In fact, this isn’t about what the Angels are doing. It’s about what the opposite groups within the American League aren’t.

However, hey, who’s complaining?

The baseball gods punished Trout by putting him on a mean group. Why shouldn’t they compensate for it by making the competitors equally common?

Name it parity, name it mediocrity, but when Trout is enjoying significant video games during the last 2½ months of the season, baseball wins.

If he’s enjoying in October, even higher.

Trout was having fun with the most efficient season of his profession when he injured his left thumb, as he was batting .337 with sixteen residence runs and 36 RBIs via forty seven video games.

The Houston Astros went into the All-Star break with a 16½-recreation lead within the AL West, the most important margin in any of baseball’s six divisions. The Boston Pink Sox and Cleveland Indians are on prime of the league’s two different divisions.

Past that may be a group of groups hovering round .500, together with the Angels.

The New York Yankees and the Rays have been positioned to be the league’s two wild-card groups on the All-Star break, with the Angels trailing the Rays by solely three video games.

The Angels have been two video games beneath .500, as after going 19-20 in Trout’s absence. They need to know quickly if they’re for actual, a minimum of by the AL’s modest requirements. They’ll host the Rays by way of the weekend. They are going to be visited subsequent week by the NL East-main Washington Nationals, in addition to the Purple Sox. The eight-recreation homestand might be adopted by a visit to Cleveland.

Their final recreation towards the Indians is July 27. Their document on the time ought to dictate whether or not they’re consumers or sellers on the commerce deadline.

Trout refrained Friday from publicly pleading with the Angels’ entrance workplace for reinforcements. Maybe it was out of political correctness. Or maybe it was as a result of he acknowledged the group doesn’t have many commerce chips in its barren farm system.

“As a staff, as gamers,” he stated politely, “we will’t management what occurs within the entrance workplace.”

They might win, which might strain common supervisor Billy Eppler into making no matter modest upgrades he’s able to making. The Angels don’t have the caliber of prospects to land a entrance-line pitcher, however they need to be capable of add an arm to their closely taxed bullpen.

If Trout’s speech mirrored a scarcity of urgency, his play did the other. He singled within the third inning, advancing Kole Calhoun to 3rd base. On the subsequent pitch, Trout bolted for second base and made a headfirst slide just like the one on which he injured his thumb six weeks earlier. Protected.

So when you have been questioning, no, Trout isn’t enjoying scared.

Earlier than the sport, he spoke about what it was wish to be on the disabled listing. He talked about displaying up at Angel Stadium when the group was on the street and seeing solely the few different gamers who have been additionally sidelined.

“It’s good to return to the ballpark and be capable of see your identify within the lineup,” he stated. “It makes you are feeling good.”

Particularly if the video games matter. Why they matter isn’t essential.

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Comply with Dylan Hernandez on Twitter @dylanohernandez