ANAHEIM, Calif. (AP) — Mike Trout tracked Christian Yelich’s high fly to the warning track and leaped to make a picture-perfect catch above the wall. Yelich could only respond by smiling and doffing his helmet in Trout’s direction.
On the rare occasions when Trout doesn’t hit a homer these days, he’s taking big hits away from his fellow MVPs.
Trout made up for his first homerless game since last Tuesday by coming up with a defensive gem in the fourth inning , and three of his fellow Angels hit their first homers of the season in Los Angeles’ fourth straight victory, 5-2 over the Milwaukee Brewers on Monday night.
Trout’s personal-best streak of four consecutive games with a homer ended when he went 0 for 2 with two walks, but the Angels superstar still changed the game with his highlight-reel play on Yelich’s drive.
“I saw him tracking it, and I (thought), ‘Aw, this is probably not good,'” Yelich said. “And it wasn’t good, but it was a great play. Tip the cap to him, and you just try and steal one from him later on in this series.”
Yelich was robbed of a potential homer for the third time in his career: Pittsburgh’s Starling Marte did it in 2015, and Kansas City’s Jarrod Dyson made an exceptional play on him in 2016.
“It’s fun when you’re the one robbing, and not so fun when you’re on the other side,” said Yelich, who still contributed his sixth multihit game out of 11 this season. “It’s part of the game.”
Angel Stadium’s short outfield fences lend themselves to homer-stealing catches, and Yelich likes outfielders having the opportunity to make those plays — even if this one went against him.
“I hope it is routine (for Trout),” Angels manager Brad Ausmus said. “I saw him do it last year. He’s a very good athlete with a wall that’s reachable. I expect we’ll see a lot more.”
Tommy La Stella and Justin Bour each hit a two-run homer for the Angels. Andrelton Simmons also went deep and made his own spectacular defensive play on a hard-hit grounder by Lorenzo Cain to kill a rally in the second.
“I thought Simmons’ play against Cain was the play of the game,” Milwaukee manager Craig Counsell said. “Most shortstops leave their feet for that ball, and if you leave your feet, Cain is going to beat it out. To get an out on that ball, that’s why he’s winning Gold Gloves. (Simmons and Trout) are two great defenders, made two big plays, and that’s probably at least two runs off the board for us.”
Trevor Cahill (1-1) pitched six strong innings of five-hit ball in his home debut for the Angels, who have rebounded from a 1-6 start to the season.
Trout walked and scored in the eighth on the first homer this season by Bour, who was off to a 3-for-31 start with his new team before his clutch two-run shot.
“As much as Mike can carry us at times, we’re going to need other guys to contribute this season,” Ausmus said. “These guys can do it.”
Mike Moustakas hit his 150th career homer in the Brewers’ first game at Angel Stadium since June 16, 2010.
Jhoulys Chacin (2-1) pitched three-hit ball into the seventh, but Milwaukee opened its six-game road trip to the Los Angeles area with its second loss in three games after a 7-1 start to the season.
Cody Allen pitched the ninth for his second save out of the Angels’ stellar bullpen, which has yielded a major league-low six earned runs in 38 1/3 innings.
La Stella’s homer in the second was his first for his new team. The utility infielder and pinch-hitting specialist homered once last season in 123 games with the Cubs.
Moustakas ended his 0-for-19 slump in the second inning with a one-bounce drive off the right field wall, although the San Fernando Valley native was held to a single because he fell down on his way to second and had to retreat.
Moustakas made his journey around the bases much safer in the fourth with a no-doubt homer over Trout’s head.
Brewers: Josh Hader understandably wasn’t available after he recorded an eight-out save against the Cubs on Sunday.