Mark Trumbo grew up in Southern California as a fan of the Los Angeles Angels.
In 2004, his favorite team selected him in the 18th round of the MLB First-Year Player Draft out of Villa Park High School.
After six seasons in their minor league system, Trumbo made his Major League debut in an Angels uniform on September 11, 2010.
He was a lifelong Angel — until Tuesday, that is, when the Arizona Diamondbacks traded for the 6-foot-4, 235-pound slugger, sending left-handed pitcher Tyler Skaggs to the Angels and Adam Eaton to the Chicago White Sox in a three-team deal.
“Getting the opportunity to play three years, give or take, in front of my family and friends, it’s something I wouldn’t trade for anything in the world,” Trumbo said on a media conference call. “But that being said, it’s time to turn my attention to a brand new team that’s made a huge commitment to bring me over.
“Obviously, they think fairly highly of me and I’m excited to get after it for them.”
Trumbo, who clubbed 34 home runs and drove in 100 runs for the Halos last season, fills a big need for the Diamondbacks, whose 130 home runs ranked 12th in the National League. The 27-year-old will complement Paul Goldschmidt in the Arizona lineup, an opportunity he’s looking forward to.
“I’m a huge fan of Paul’s and the way he plays the game,” Trumbo said. “He’s everything you could ever ask for in a middle-of-the-order type bat, he’s a tremendous teammate and I think it’s going to be an outstanding opportunity for me to be slotted in a lineup, not only with Paul, but everyone else that slots in as well.
“I think this lineup is primed to do some real damage and I’m really glad I can be a part of it.”
There is no question about Trumbo’s power potential — he was one of only seven players to hit have 30 homers, 30 doubles and 100 RBI last season. There is plenty of question about his defense, as he’s been kind of a player without a position for much of his career. In 2013, he played mostly at first base with the Angels, but that won’t happen in Arizona with Goldschmidt entrenched at the position.
Trumbo projects as the every day left fielder for the Diamondbacks, and he feels knowing where he’ll play every day will help his defense.
“What’s happening here is materializing that I might be in left field quite a bit and with more experience and more knowledge of your home ballpark and things of that nature, I think that can only help me become a more well-rounded defender and a contributor in that aspect of the game,” he said.
The other adjustment Trumbo will have to make is to life in the National League.
“I’m sure I’ll have to get adjusted to a few of the differences in the style of play, but I think the bigger transition is getting to learn a lot of new arms,” said Trumbo, who has 13 homers and a .246 batting average in 207 Interleague at-bats. “Fortunately, I have seen quite a few of the teams in the NL West, but there’s going to be quite a few new guys that I’m going to do some homework on and game plan for as we move forward.”