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Since his promotion from Triple-A Salt Lake near the end of April, Los Angeles Angels rookie Mike Trout has taken the American League by storm. However, the 21-year-old's rocket launch to stardom has slowed a little in August.
Trout went 1-for-13 during the weekend series in Detroit, going hitless in back-to-back games for only the second time since the start of May (he has not gone longer than two games without a hit this season). He is batting .286 this month with 27 strikeouts, one short of his monthly high this season.
August is the first time this season that Trout's average has gone backward. He hit .324 in May, .372 in June and a blistering .392 in July.
"It's definitely a long year," Trout said of his slowing pace. "You just got to keep your preparation the same, keep playing hard."
Trout still leads the American League with a .337 average, but his lead is now just 13 points over Tigers third baseman Miguel Cabrera -- his main competition for the AL MVP award. Trout has slipped behind Cabrera for the AL slugging lead (.586 to .585) but still leads the AL in on-base-plus-slugging percentage (.986), runs (100) and stolen bases (41).
"You're going to have ebbs and flows of a season," Angels manager Mike Scioscia said. "He's a talented kid, but even young, talented kids are going to have ups and downs of a season. As consistent as he's been -- which has been remarkable for guys that have seen it every day -- there's still going to be those times when you're just a little bit off and hits don't fall in and that kind of stuff.
"For just about the whole season, it's been incredible. Teams have faced him two, three times after that, so it's not like teams haven't made adjustments. I think he's holding up remarkably well."