The Los Angeles Angels don't have a lot of experience with batting championships.
They have had just one batting champ in franchise history. Alex Johnson edged Carl Yastrzemski by the slimmest of margins -- .3290 to .3286 -- to win the crown in 1970.
But when Angels rookie Mike Trout arrived at Camden Yards on Tuesday for the opener of a two-game series against the Baltimore Orioles, his name was atop the AL batting leader board. The 20-year-old leapfrogged Chicago White Sox first baseman Paul Konerko on Monday and solidified his lead despite a 1-for-5 night Tuesday in the Angels' 7-3 win. Trout is batting .335. Konerko, hitless Monday and Tuesday, is at .333.
"Mike's playing at a high level, and he obviously has the potential to do some of the things he's doing on the field," manager Mike Scioscia said before the game. "But to see someone as young as Mike is -- experience-wise and age -- come up and play at this level has been an awakening for our team. It's been fun to watch and hopefully it's going to continue."
Trout is the first Angel to lead the AL in batting average this late in a season since Garret Anderson was leading with a .322 average on Sept. 2, 2003.
"He's always hit for high average wherever he's been," Scioscia said of Trout. "He takes his walks. He has the speed you need to take the mis-hits and get a base hit out of it.
"I don't think you want to put too many expectations on one player, but certainly his skill set says some of the numbers that are popping up are something that he's able to do."