It hasn’t been decided yet just where Mike Trout will hit in the Los Angeles Angels 2014 lineup, but any combination of Trout, Albert Pujols and Josh Hamilton will give the Angels one of the top five lineups in all of baseball. My belief is that your best hitter should hit in the 3-hole in the lineup. If Trout is being touted as the best player in baseball then he would obviously be the best hitter in this Angels lineup, meaning he should be the 3 hitter in 2014. I would possibly like to see Trout, Pujols and Hamilton as the 3-4-5 hitters this season.
If Erick Aybar can get on base enough to be the lead off man then Howie Kendrick could bat 2nd. Kendrick’s .325 OBP hitting in front of Trout would allow Trout to drive in some runs. If Trout puts up what has come to be the normal season in his young career, then he will be a regular on base for Pujols and Hamilton.
Some other lineups that could rival the Angels’ 3-4-5 “Hammering Halos” would be the Atlanta Braves’ young crop of Freddie Freeman, Justin Upton and Jason Heyward, yet none of those guys are Hall of Famers yet. In St. Louis, the Cardinals trio of Matt Holliday, Allen Craig and Matt Adams could put a scare into some pitchers if Adams is ready for the majors. The Colorado Rockies group of Carlos Gonzalez, Troy Tulowitzki and Michael Cuddyer get overlooked but in their home park they are beastly. The Angels cross-town foes, the Los Angeles Dodgers, have put together a formidable lineup with the likes of Hanley Ramirez, Adrian Gonzalez and Matt Kemp, if all are healthy. The Detroit Tigers were on this list last season with Miguel Cabrera, Prince Fielder and Victor Martinez, but when they loaded Fielder onto the plane and sent him to the Texas Rangers, the Rangers replaced the Tigers on this list with Prince Fielder, Adrian Beltre and Alex Rios.
In the end, I like the Angels 3-4-5 with the best player in baseball Trout, a for-sure Hall of Famer Pujols, and a former MVP in Hamilton.