Mike Trout arrived in camp with some concern about baseball’s new rule requiring hitters to keep one foot in the box between pitches because part of his routine has been to step completely out of the box and take a few warm-up swings after each pitch.
“It's definitely going to affect me,” Trout, who won the American League MVP award in 2014, said in late February. “I'm going to have to change, obviously. When I call time, I'm thinking too much. That's the main reason I call timeout. We'll see how that works.”
But through four exhibition games, the new rule hasn’t affected Trout nearly as much as he thought it would. He’s still taking a warm-up swing or two after every pitch, but he’s doing it with his right foot on the back line of the batter’s box.
“My routine hasn’t really changed,” said Trout, who hit his first home run of the spring against Kansas City on Sunday and is in the lineup for Monday’s game against the Cincinnati Reds in Goodyear, Ariz. “It’s not bothering me at all.
“You don’t really know what you do until you actually go out and do it in a game. I think it’s kind of funny. You catch yourself trying to keep your foot in the box, and you look kind of funny. Other than that, it’s not really an issue.”