Mike Trout on All-Star Game: ‘If you deserve to be there, you should be there.’

Mike Trout

Mike Trout (right) was chosen an American League All-Star in 2012 despite not making his debut until April 28.

In hindsight, it would seem unjust if Mike Trout wasn’t an All-Star in 2012. In case you forgot: Second in the MVP voting, American League Rookie of the Year, 30 home runs, 49 steals, 129 runs scored, .326/.399/.564 slash line, 10.9 bWAR, yada, yada, yada …

Yet when All-Star game voting opened a year ago, on April 20, 2012, Mike Trout was in Triple-A. His first game of the season was eight days away. Ten days into the balloting, on May 1, Trout was batting .091. By June 1, he had five home runs and the pacesetter, Oakland A’s outfielder Josh Reddick, had 14.

So you wonder if Bruce Bochy would have wanted Trout, if by some strange reason the San Francisco Giants manager was in charge of the American League squad. Bochy explained his theory in a radio interview earlier today when asked about Yasiel Puig, the Dodgers outfielder who is putting up Trout-like numbers (better than that, even) through his first 13 major-league games.

In short, Bochy said that players who have been in the major leagues all season should be given consideration over players who have not.

Trout disagreed.

“I just think if you put up good numbers and you deserve to be there, you should be there. If guys are coming into the league this year, putting up great numbers — like my buddy from the D-backs, (pitcher) Patrick Corbin, he’s 9-0, whatever he is, pitching great. He deserves to be there. There’s a couple guys you could think of who were having great years last year that didn’t get voted in.

“For me, it’s just put up good numbers, you get voted into the All-Star Game.”

For Trout, being so new to the big leagues allowed him to appreciate it more.

“It was a great experience for me just to be in the clubhouse with the guys, all the top talent in the big leagues, guys you watched growing up,” he said. “Being with them was pretty special.”

Trout speaks from the experience of having voted himself growing up. Online, even. Albert Pujols was among his annual picks, even though Trout was a Philadelphia Phillies fan.

“I voted for the best guys,” he said.

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About J.P. Hoornstra

J.P. Hoornstra covers the Dodgers, Angels and Major League Baseball for the Orange County Register, Los Angeles Daily News, Long Beach Press-Telegram, Torrance Daily Breeze, San Gabriel Valley Tribune, Pasadena Star-News, San Bernardino Sun, Inland Valley Daily Bulletin, Whittier Daily News and Redlands Daily Facts. Before taking the beat in 2012, J.P. covered the NHL for four years. UCLA gave him a degree once upon a time; when he graduated on schedule, he missed getting Arnold Schwarzenegger's autograph on his diploma by five months.