Mike Trout

Eagles superfan Mike Trout makes bold prediction for Birds in 2019

Eagles superfan Mike Trout makes bold prediction for Birds in 2019

When it comes to famous Philadelphia Eagles fans, nobody is a bigger supporter than Los Angeles Angels outfielder Mike Trout. 

The Millville, New Jersey native attends as many games at the Linc each season as he possibly can. He’s tight with the Eagles players and they’ve been known to reward him with keepsake footballs after scoring touchdowns. Trout returned the favor by gifting some bobbleheads to the Birds a couple of seasons ago.

So when Jim Salisbury caught up with Trout out at the MLB All-Star festivities in Cleveland on Monday, of course he had to ask him about his prediction for the Birds this coming season.

“Going to the Super Bowl, baby,” Trout said.

He was also asked about DeSean Jackson's return. 

"I'm excited. Big playmaker. He's a big part of the offense and is going to help Carson Wentz out a lot."

Trout and Eagles quarterback Carson Wentz have been known to go hunting together in their free time. Maybe next time they go they'll have another Super Bowl victory to reminisce over.

No Mike Trout envy for Bryce Harper: 'I got more money than I'll know what to do with'

No Mike Trout envy for Bryce Harper: 'I got more money than I'll know what to do with'

CLEARWATER, Fla. — Bryce Harper’s reign as king of baseball salaries lasted less than three weeks.

And he’s OK with that.

“I got more money than I’ll know what to do with,” Harper said Wednesday, 24 hours after being displaced by Mike Trout as the game’s highest-paid player.

“I got the length I wanted, I got the contract I wanted, I got the team that I wanted and the ownership that trusted in me. Once I knew Trout was going to sign, it's inevitable that he was going to be the highest-paid player in the game and all of sports. I'm very happy for him.

“He’s very deserving.”

Trout topped Harper’s $330 million payday when he agreed to a $360 million extension with the Los Angeles Angels on Tuesday.

“I texted him when the news broke,” Harper said. “I told him, ‘So excited for you and Jess.’ I’m very excited for what’s to come for him and his contract and his career.”

After signing a 13-year deal with the Phillies earlier this month, Harper openly fantasized about one day playing with Trout in Philadelphia. Trout, of course, hails from South Jersey. He grew up rooting for the Phillies and still roots passionately for the Eagles. Trout would have been eligible for free agency after the 2020 season. Now, he’s under contract with Anaheim through 2030.

Maybe they can play together in 2031.

Harper laughed.

“The Angels made a great decision of making him the face of their franchise for a long period of time,” he said.

Over the last month, a handful of stars have signed mega deals. Nolan Arenado landed a $260 million extension with Colorado. Manny Machado got $300 million from the Padres and Harper and Trout both cleared the $300 million mark. 

Every deal pushes the bar a little higher.

“When I talked to [Trout] this offseason it was kind of, 'Man, I want to get as much as I can so that you can blow me out of the water pretty much,'" Harper said. “And he did. I was very excited for him. I'm excited for Mookie [Betts] to see what he gets when he goes about [free agency]. Aaron Judge, as well. And, you know, for the players, I think it's huge for us.”

Harper started in right field for the Phillies in Wednesday’s 3-1 loss to the Tigers. He had his first Grapefruit League base hit, struck out once and walked once.

Harper will play in right field again on Thursday against the Blue Jays in Clearwater. The tentative plan is for him to sit out Friday night’s game then play in the final three games in Florida, at Bradenton against the Pirates on Saturday and in Clearwater on Sunday and Monday.

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A Philly fan's defense of Mike Trout's mega deal to play in L.A.

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A Philly fan's defense of Mike Trout's mega deal to play in L.A.

Mike Trout’s monster 12-year, $430 million contract extension with the Angels this week simultaneously broke Bryce Harper’s barely three-week-old record contract of $330 million and broke the hearts of everyone in the tri-state area. While I count myself among the Philly fans who were bummed when the Trout news broke given how much of a formality it seemed that he would come here as a free agent in two years, I cannot blame Trout for his decision.

Every East Coast-born person fantasizes about moving to California at some point. I once convinced a Los Angeles-based company to pay for me to fly out there for several days for a job interview (I also saw the Eagles play at the Coliseum, the game where Carson Wentz tore his ACL, and didn’t get the job. It was a bad week!), so I get it. While I was walking around University City in college on 35-degree winter days bundled up like Ralphie’s brother in A Christmas Story, I kicked myself for not going to a school like UCLA.

I too have wished it was 70-something degrees and sunny every single day while suffering through Philadelphia’s two seasons: freezing rain and brutal humidity. I would also be lying if I said offering me $430 million to do the one thing I might be better at than anyone who’s ever lived wasn’t awesome. Trout’s on his way to truly being the greatest baseball player of all time. He may be mired in irrelevance because the Angels seem so incompetent, but is that really the worst thing in the world for him?

Sure, I know Trout is craving a World Series ring. Racking up MVPs, making hundreds of millions of dollars and cruising through SoCal in semi-anonymity because he’s not a Hollywood star or a guy in 100 commercials has its obvious perks though. He can do all that while having his Octobers free because he plays for a bad franchise, leaving him able to attend six Eagles home games every season. It sounds like the most chill life possible.

Yes, Trout is an Eagles superfan, but just look at what he does when he’s at the Linc. He’ll be on the field before the game shooting the bull with Carson Wentz and then sits in a private little end zone box so Zach Ertz can flip him footballs after he scores touchdowns. He’s not sitting in Section 219 next to a dozen dudes from Grays Ferry and cheersing cans of Miller Lite with them after their umpteetnth “E-A-G-L-E-S” chant. I wouldn’t want to hang out with me either!

Whenever a star player, regardless of sport, inches towards free agency, fans and the media alike are quick to speculate that the athlete may go play for his hometown team, but that rarely seems to happen. The idea of growing up in the Philly area and becoming a superstar centerfielder for the Phillies sounds amazing, but if I was absurdly rich, I probably wouldn’t want to spend my entire life in the same place.

Trout would be a messiah figure if he had come to Philly in 2021. He also wouldn’t be able to walk down the street and grab a half-gallon of Wawa Peach Iced Tea without being mobbed by a hundred rabid Philly fans ready to bow down and kiss his feet. He would potentially have more pressure on him than any athlete in Philly history given how unbelievable his career has been so far, where he was born and who his favorite football team is. He could either be in an environment with unparalleled stress or he could face almost zero pressure while surrounded by palm trees in Los Angeles. Just to reiterate: it’s 70-something degrees there everyday.

Who knows, the DH could come to the National League by 2032 and a 40-year-old Trout built like Jeremiah Trotter could become a playoff hero in the vein of Matt Stairs while clobbering 25 homers in the regular season despite barely being able to jog around the bases. We can always dream even if the ideal situation for Trout in red pinstripes is gone.  

Maybe Mike Trout isn’t really about this life and maybe that’s the best thing for him.

Millville’s not even that close to Philly anyway, right?

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