Mike Trout could receive as little as $490,000, the league minimum, when the Angels renew his contract. Trout was the 2012 Rookie of the Year and finished second in the MVP race. (Otto Greule Jr./Getty Images)
The Angels will renew Mike Trout's contract as early as Saturday, and they can assign him a salary he doesn't agree to, going as low as the $490,000 league minimum if they choose. Because Trout is not yet eligible for arbitration, he has no leverage, despite his unanimous Rookie of the Year award and runner-up finish for the MVP.
Trout appears to be unconcerned:
"I'm not worried about it," Trout said. "Whatever it is, it is. I have to go out and put up some numbers and see what happens."
There are instances in the past when teams have been fairly generous with second-year salaries in similar situations. Albert Pujols won Rookie of the Year and finished fourth in MVP voting in 2001; the following year, the Cardinals signed him for $600,000 which was double the minimum salary at the time. Derek Jeter received five times the minimum after his Rookie of the Year season, and Kerry Wood was signed for six times the minimum after his.
Angels GM Jerry Dipoto and Trout's agent, Craig Landis, did not comment on the ongoing negotiations.