Mike Trout — already an all-time great?

Babe Ruth, Mickey Mantle, Willie Mays, Ted Williams……Mike Trout. He's 22 years old and those are the names being associated with him. The best of the best.

After an All-Star game performance not seen since 1934, now is a good time to reflect on how good Mike Trout is. He is the first player since Earl Averill in 1934 with at least a double, triple, and two RBIs at the midsummer classic.

Wins above replacement (WAR) is by no means a perfect statistic. It is the closest measurement we have to evaluate every contribution a player makes to a team. Preventing runs on defense is just as important as creating runs on offense. Baserunning is often overlooked as well.

WAR takes into account every aspect. It approximates how many more wins a player is worth than a replacement level player. Replacement level production is considered to be what a bench player or minor leaguer would provide if he had to replace an MLB starter.

The Millville, N.J., native has led the MLB in WAR in each of his two full seasons, and is on his way to doing it again in 2014. His rare set of advanced skills in each facet of the game drives up his WAR total. He is a complete hitter, possessing the ability to hit for a high average, hit for power, and to display well above average plate discipline. Trout is also a premier baserunner. He takes the extra base when the opportunity is there and steals bases at a very high rate.

Let's not forget about defense. Trout plays center field, one of the most important positions. His speed and instincts allow him to get great jumps and cover tons of ground.

Now that we've said Trout is well above average at each part of the game, let's dive into the numbers that back it up.

We cannot compare Trout with all-time greats in terms of career totals (home runs, hits, etc.) because he does not have enough plate appearances yet. Instead, we will look at his percentages, and what he is on pace to do if he keeps it up.

He has, however, already matched the greats going by WAR.

Using's WAR calculation, Trout posted a 10.0 WAR in 2012 and a 10.4 WAR in 2013. He joins Ty Cobb, Babe Ruth, Rogers Hornsby, Ted Williams, Mickey Mantle, Willie Mays and Barry Bonds as the only players to post at least 10 WAR in back-to-back seasons.

If you are less statistically inclined or don't buy into WAR, just take a look at those names again. That should be enough to show what he's accomplished.

Using one of the best statistics to evaluate a hitter, on-base percentage plus slugging percentage (OPS), Trout ranks 17th all time with a career mark of .960. In this category, he is right behind names like Miguel Cabrera, Stan Musial, Mickey Mantle, Joe DiMaggio, and other greats.

When baserunning is added in, that's when the numbers become mind blowing. Mike Trout is the ONLY player in baseball history with a career batting line of at least .310/.400/.550 (batting average/OBP/SLG) and a stolen base percentage of at least 88 percent for a player with at least 95 career stolen bases.

His career mark stands at .313/.403/.557 with 96 stolen bases in 108 attempts. At this pace he will join Barry Bonds as the only players in history with at least 500 home runs and 500 stolen bases. He currently has 84 home runs.

In 2012, he also became the first player in history with at least 30 home runs, 125 runs scored, and 45 stolen bases. At the time, he was 20 years old and a rookie.

Defensively, he has made just 10 errors in 1,003 career chances. He also grades out extremely well in more advanced defensive metrics like DRS (defensive runs saved) and UZR (ultimate zone rating). He has a career DRS of 11, meaning he has saved 11 runs from scoring, which is considered above average. Ultimate zone rating measures a player's defensive value taking into account his arm, speed, and range. Professionals watch the games, and determine the difficulty of each play. Trout's career UZR is 18.3, meaning he is worth 18.3 runs better than the league average of zero.

We have seen great hitters, great defenders, and great baserunners throughout history. It is very uncommon to come across a player who excels at each one however, and we are very lucky to be able to witness one over the next few years. Mike Trout is just getting started.

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