Angels manager Joe Maddon said Thursday that he hasn't ruled out deploying Trout (foot) as the club's leadoff hitter this season, Fabian Ardaya of The Athletic reports. "It's in the playbook," Maddon said, though he noted that he yet to decide on lineup spots for any of his hitters at this point.
Trout hasn't been a fixture in the leadoff spot since his rookie season in 2012, with former skippers Mike Scioscia and Brad Ausmus using the outfielder almost exclusively out of the Nos. 2 and 3 spots over the past seven years. The safe money is on that pattern holding once Opening Day arrives, though it's worth noting that during his tenure with the Cubs, Maddon frequently used one of his top power hitters in Anthony Rizzo atop the order. Trout's superior speed and on-base skills would seemingly make him an even more natural fit than Rizzo as a leadoff man, so it wouldn't be surprising if Maddon at least experiments with the 28-year-old in a table-setting role during Cactus League action. No matter where he slots in the batting order come the start of the season, Trout looks like he'll be a consensus top-three selection in fantasy drafts, provided he's fully healthy after undergoing surgery on his right foot last September.