ANAHEIM, Calif. — Mike Trout instantly figured something was wrong. And the Angels’ star was right – he’s now out for the longest stretch of his major league career because of a strained right calf.

The three-time AL MVP is expected to miss 6 to 8 weeks, which would sideline the Los Angeles outfielder through the All-Star break.

“It is not just a little bump in the road. I mean, I’m really crushed about it,” Trout said Tuesday.

The Angels put Trout on the injured list, a day after he came up limping when he headed toward third base on a popup that ended the first inning. Trout said when he put his head down to run, he thought he’d been hit by a line drive.

“I knew it was bad when it happened. I felt the pop and was just hoping for the best,” Trout said. “I wanted to make sure it wasn’t my Achilles. So I guess if there’s any positive that comes out of this, at least it wasn’t that. It was just a freak thing.”

Trout slammed down his batting helmet as he exited the field, an injury interrupting what had been another stellar season.

Trout is leading the majors in on-base percentage (.466) and OPS (1.090) and is sixth in the American League with a .333 batting average, along with eight home runs and 18 RBI.

He missed three games earlier this season with a swollen left elbow after being hit by a pitch.

Despite being in a 1 for 17 slump when he was injured, Trout was off to the best start of his career with a .425 batting average in April.

This will be the 29-year-old Trout’s third stint on the injured list in his 11-year career. He missed 39 games in 2017 with a left thumb ligament injury and 15 games the following season due to right wrist inflammation. He was out the final 22 games in 2019 after undergoing foot surgery but was not placed on the IL due to the expanded rosters.

OBIT: Rennie Stennett, the sure-handed second baseman who was part of the first all-Black starting lineup in major league history and later helped the Pittsburgh Pirates win the 1979 World Series, has died. He was 72. The team, citing information provided by the Stennett family, said Stennett passed away early Tuesday morning following a bout with cancer.

Stennett hit .274 with 41 home runs and 432 RBI in 11 big league seasons, nine of them with Pittsburgh. Though he was never named to an All-Star team, he received Most Valuable Player votes in both 1974 and in 1977, when he hit a career-best .336 before missing the final six weeks of the season due to an injury.

The Panamanian-born Stennett reached the majors with the Pirates in 1971. On Sept. 1, 1971, he started at second base as part of the first all-Black lineup in MLB history in a 10-7 victory over Philadelphia, a group that included Hall of Famers Roberto Clemente and Willie Stargell.

On Sept. 16, 1975, Stennett became the only player in the modern era to go 7 for 7 in a nine-inning game when hit four singles, two doubles and a triple in a 22-0 victory over the Chicago Cubs.

Stennett played primarily at second base but also spent time at shortstop and the outfield during his career. He had a pinch hit in his only at-bat of the 1979 World Series, winning a ring as the Pirates rallied to beat Baltimore in seven games.

“Rennie symbolized what it meant to be a Pittsburgh Pirate,” Pittsburgh president Travis Williams said in a release.

Stennett left the Pirates after the 1979 season, signing a five-year contract with San Francisco. The Giants, however, released him in April 1982.

Stennett is survived by his daughter, Renee, sons Rennie Jr. and Roberto, and several grandchildren.

YANKEES: Second baseman Rougned Odor was activated from the injured list and was in the starting lineup for the second of their four-game series against his former team, the Texas Rangers.

Odor missed 12 games with a left knee sprain after a collision at home plate with Houston Astros catcher Martin Maldonado when trying to avoid a tag in a game May 4.

Odor, 27, played his first seven big league seasons for the Rangers, who designated him for assignment April 1 and left him off their Opening-Day roster even when still owed two guaranteed seasons at $12 million each.

Odor hit .164 with four homers and 11 RBI in his 19 games with the Yankees before getting hurt.

Gleyber Torres could be back in the  lineup as early as Wednesday, a week after the fully vaccinated shortstop tested positive for COVID-19.

Manager Aaron Boone said Torres had been cleared by Major League Baseball’s joint committee and was already en route to Texas to rejoin the team. The shortstop could potentially be activated Wednesday.

WHITE SOX: Manager Tony La Russa said Yermin Mercedes made a “big mistake” when he crushed a 3-0 pitch from infielder Willians Astudillo for a solo homer in the ninth inning of Monday night’s 16-4 victory over the Minnesota Twins.

The 76-year-old Hall of Fame manager said he was yelling for Mercedes to take. Instead, the rookie drove the 47-mph eephus pitch deep to center for his sixth homer – and touched off yet another debate about baseball’s unwritten rules.

“That’s just sportsmanship, respect for the game, respect for your opponent,” La Russa said Tuesday. “He made a mistake, so there will be a consequence that he has to endure here within our family. But it won’t happen again because (third base coach Joe McEwing) will be on the lookout and I will be too, and we’ll go running in front of the pitcher if we have to.”

The 28-year-old Mercedes has been one of baseball’s biggest surprises so far this year, and the designated hitter was back in the Chicago lineup for Tuesday night’s game at Minnesota. He hit a major league-best .364 with 25 RBI over his first 36 games.

“I’m going to play like that. I’m Yermin. I can’t be another person because if I’m changing, everything is going to (be) changing,” Mercedes said. “Everything was good. Some of my teammates just talked with me. Just be relaxed, everything was good, everything was good, just do you. We’re good.”

Mercedes’ swing put the spotlight back on lingering questions about how the game should be played, with a new wave of players challenging what is regarded as proper on-field decorum. While bat flipping was once frowned upon in the sport, it has now almost become just another part of the game.

Young Padres slugger Fernando Tatis Jr. hit a grand slam on a 3-0 pitch off Juan Nicasio with San Diego leading by seven runs last August in a game it eventually won 14-4. That play drew a rebuke from Jayce Tingler, Tatis’ manager, for missing a take sign.

After La Russa and Mercedes talked Tuesday, shortstop Tim Anderson backed Mercedes in an Instagram comment under an NBC Sports Chicago post featuring pulled quotes from the manager and the slugger.

“The game wasn’t over! Keep doing you big daddy,” Anderson wrote.

Mercedes responded: “yes sir let’s do it baby.”

San Francisco Giants pitcher Alex Wood also weighed in, posting on Twitter that he felt a position player on the mound meant “all  ‘rules’ are out the window.”

“Plus do y’all realize how hard that is to launch a 49mph pitch 400 feet lol? Give the people what they want,” Wood wrote.

La Russa didn’t feel like having Astudillo on the mound changed the equation very much. La Russa said he apologized to the Twins.

“He’s not going to do that again,” La Russa said. “I heard he says something like I played my game, but no, he doesn’t. He plays the game of Major League Baseball that respects the game, respects the opponents, and that was not (it). And he’s got to respect the signs. When he gets the take sign, he takes.”

La Russa was hired by Chicago in October in a surprise move, putting him back in the dugout for the first time since he won the World Series with St. Louis in 2011. While it has been a a little bumpy so far – La Russa wasn’t aware of an extra-inning rule that played a role in a loss on May 5 – the White Sox had the best record in baseball heading into play on Tuesday.

La Russa said he talked to Mercedes, and called what happened “a learning experience.”

“The fact that he’s a rookie and was excited helps explain why he just was clueless,” La Russa said. “But now he’s got a clue.”


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