By Manny Randhawa /

Last Friday night in Anaheim, Mike Trout ripped a line drive with an exit velocity of 118.0 mph at Twins shortstop Gregorio Petit. The result was an out to end the game — a 5-4 loss vs. Minnesota — but it was the hardest batted ball any Angels player has hit since Statcast™ was introduced in 2015. It was also a prime example of an overall trend this season for Trout, widely considered the best player in baseball.

Trout, who has won the American League Most Valuable Player Award twice and finished runner-up three times in six full seasons, has produced an exit velocity of 95 mph or greater in 46.9 percent of his batted balls so far in 2018. That’s his highest hard-hit rate through May 15 since Statcast™ began tracking. Trout’s highest hard-hit rate for a full season was 48.9 percent in ’15. Last season, it was 39.9 percent.


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