In Major League Baseball, the debate of which young phenom will have the better career is all the rage. These phenoms, of course, are Mike Trout of the Angels and Bryce Harper of the Nationals. Trout, who just turned 21, is the unanimous AL Rookie of the Year and perhaps MVP. He has almost single handedly turned around a struggling Angels team and continues to impress in every game. Harper, while not quite having the year Trout is, has been the most hyped prospect in years and is putting together a nice season with a stat line of .254/10 HR/30 RBI/13 SB. Not particularly jaw dropping, but considering the kid is barely old enough to get into a rated-R movie at age 19, they are something you could easily live with and get excited about. While both will easily get better as they age, there is one young outfielder who is forgotten in this debate and firmly belongs in it.
That man, is Giancarlo Stanton.
On Wednesday night, the Mets (as they have, since he came into the league) were demolished by the Marlins right fielder. He hit two home runs, one of which that got out before Chris Young could even turn around to look at it. He undoubtedly has the most power of any man in baseball, has a howitzer of an arm, and can run very well for a man his size. He, like the aforementioned outfielders, should only get better as he ages which is terrible news for Met fans as that will likely mean he will also continue to destroy New York whenever he plays them. Yes, he has played on the major league level longer than both Harper and Trout combined, but at 22 he is one of the most dominant power bats in the game at an age when most of us were just graduating college.
So this leads me to the heart of the matter. If you were a GM and had the choice to build around one of these men, who would you choose? The five tool Trout, the teenage Harper, or the tank with legs Stanton?
My vote goes to Stanton. He has strength that no ball park can contain and can anchor the middle of a lineup for the next decade easy. I envision him as a 45 plus home run guy, driving in 100 plus runs every year, and I definitely think I am being conservative with those numbers. I doubt you could go wrong with any of these players, and hopefully as Met fans, we could one day have a position player that rivals the talent of these men.