Trout’s MVP year can’t overcome injuries to staff

The Angels entered the 2016 season with the best player in baseball and high hopes that the men surrounding him would get the club back to the postseason.

Those hopes never materialized because of a rash of injuries, but one thing remained certain as the season ended with the disappointment of a 74-88 record: As long as you’ve got Mike Trout, there’s always reason for optimism.

Trout won his second American League Most Valuable Player Award, but that wasn’t the only positive development for a team that lost so many starting pitchers to injury that its status as a contender never materialized. The Angels won each of their final three series in 2016 and were 25-20 over their last 45 games.

2016 Year in Review Final 2016 MLB stats Final 2016 MLB standings Hot Stove Tracker Select a team ¬–AL East ¬BaltimoreBostonNew YorkTampa BayToronto–AL Central ¬ChicagoClevelandDetroitKansas CityMinnesota–AL West ¬HoustonLos AngelesOaklandSeattleTexas–NL East ¬AtlantaMiamiNew YorkPhiladelphiaWashington–NL Central ¬ChicagoCincinnatiMilwaukeePittsburghSt. Louis–NL West ¬ArizonaColoradoLos AngelesSan DiegoSan FranciscoFull coverage ¬–PostseasonAll-Star GameDraftStatcastOpening DayHall of Fame inductionsJackie Robinson DayRoberto Clemente DayFort Bragg GameTrade DeadlineWinter MeetingsAwardsFeats, tributes ¬–Ichiro reaches 3,000 hitsArrieta’s second career no-hitterScherzer strikes out 20Scully retires after legendary careerBig Papi calls it a careerJose Fernandez: 1992-2016Monte Irvin: 1919-2016Ralph Branca: 1926-2016

“Obviously we were out of it, but we finished strong,” Trout said. “There was a lot of positives we can look at for next year. Seemed like every other week we had a guy go down in our lineup or our pitching staff. It took a big hit. We played it good the last few months.”

The Angels almost never had a chance this year, despite Trout’s continued rewriting of baseball’s history books. Here are the key storylines:

5. Left out

The Angels struggled in left field in 2015 but liked their …

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