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#pounditFriday, October 15, 2021

Angels rebuke commissioner, defend Mike Trout

Mike Trout

The Los Angeles Angels are not happy with commissioner Rob Manfred’s recent comments about Mike Trout, and they’re not even bothering to hide it.

On Tuesday, Manfred responded to criticism of MLB failing to properly market its stars by pointing out that players have to be actively engaged in marketing themselves if they want to be household names, and that Trout has chosen not to do that.

“Mike’s a great, great player and a really nice person, but he’s made certain decisions about what he wants to do and what he doesn’t want to do, and how he wants to spend his free time and how he doesn’t want to spend his free time,” Manfred said, via ESPN. “That’s up to him. If he wants to engage and be more active in that area, I think we could help him make his brand really, really big. But he has to make a decision that he’s prepared to engage in that area. It takes time and effort.”

The Angels clearly didn’t think much of Manfred’s response, and on Wednesday, issued a rather extraordinary statement in praise of their star outfielder while simultaneously shading the commissioner.

There is no other way to read this but as a rebuke of the commissioner’s comments, and Bill Shaikin of the Los Angeles Times quickly pointed out that Angels owner Arte Moreno initially wasn’t a supporter of Manfred’s.

Ever since entering the league, Trout has gone about his business in a low-key, no-nonsense manner. He’s declined the chance to participate in some of the league’s bigger showcases, and he doesn’t really do bombastic things on or off the field, preferring to hang out at Eagles games and geek out about weather. He shouldn’t be criticized for any of that, and it appears that Manfred may have caused a bigger problem for himself by singling Trout out as a player who simply hasn’t been engaged in enough self-promotion.

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