Mike Trout is having a season for the ages. That shouldn't be news to you. But let's forget about the present and think about what could be an even more promising future, as terrifying as that sounds.
By common thought in the statistical community, Trout -- who turned 21 on Aug. 7 and leads the AL in batting average, runs and steals -- is still six to eight years away from his peak. If you are the Los Angeles Angels you want that peak. That means a contract extension for the most valuable young asset in the game. So let's say the Angels decide today that they need to sign Trout to a long-term extension, knowing full well that he isn't eligible to be a free agent until after the 2017 season. How do they even approach this?
To find out, I talked to a combination of 10 scouts and executives to get their take and figure out what a contract extenstion for Trout would look like.
Approach No. 1: The Cautious Route
For many polled, now is simply not the time to discuss a Trout extension. "I'll go low because I can just pay him $1 [million] to $1.5 million for the next two years [before he hits arbitration] and then try to do an eight-year deal going into his age-23 season," a National League executive said.