Mike Trout is the best player in baseball even while people freak out about him slumping or something, so it's weird to find out that, 375 games into his career, he had yet to hit a walkoff home run. He took care of that in game 376, at least, going deep in the bottom of the ninth against the Tampa Bay Rays to secure the come-from-behind victory for his Angels.
Now, we here at SB Nation adore post-homer theatrics, so I have to say I'm a little disappointed that Trout didn't flaunt his game-winning homer a bit more. It's his first time, though, and he showed some promise, so let's see where he could improve in time for the next walkoff shot.
First, the absence of a bat flip is not a discussion-ender, especially not with the proper strut in place of it. Trout didn't fully commit to a post-homer strut, though, and it will cost him with the judges:
He wants to strut -- even though he cuts it short, you see him go back to watching his handiwork after the switch to the boring old "put your head down and run" method of celebration. Let it all out next time, Mike. Just take a leisurely stroll up the first base line and add a couple of ticks to that Tater Trot Tracker time.
He salvaged things coming down the third base line, though, so this walkoff isn't entirely without the appropriate attitude. Check Trout with the mid-trot five followed by a helmet toss here.
That's a Jonny Gomes Special right there, something that it is the duty of the Daily Puig to note. If Trout ever punts his helmet after taking it off a la Gomes, we will build a statue in his honor.
Trout opted for the ever-popular -- but dangerous -- jump onto home plate. I can't say I recommend this, especially not for an Angels player. Did Kendrys Morales teach us nothing when he snapped his ankle?
It's just not a good look.
This is a decent start -- let's give it a 50 on the 20-80 scouting scale -- but more will be expected from your next walkoff blast, Mike. You're an 80-grade star, so I expect better than average from your celebrations. Commit to that strut a little more -- no one is going to feel shown up if you take an extra couple of seconds to admire a game-winner. The helmet toss helped save it, as did the excited run to home plate, but next time, leave the jump out of it and just let your teammates mob you instead.
We'll save the bat flip/strut combination for your fourth or fifth walkoff. I don't want to overwhelm you so soon into your career. If you practice long and hard, someday, the teachings of the Walkoff Master will be unveiled to you.