The first time White Sox outfielder Eloy Jimenez, a veteran of exactly one big-league season, compared Luis Robert to Mike Trout, I must have been in a kind mood. Perhaps I’d found a dollar in a coat I hadn’t worn in months. Or I’d finally been able to wrestle the remote from my wife. Or somebody, mistaking my writing for a cry for help, had helped me across the street. Something.
I let it go. It was SoxFest, and as is typical at winter fan conventions, enthusiasm had left the barn and was in full gallop. So Jimenez could be forgiven — sort of — for comparing a prospect who never had a major-league at-bat (Robert) to a three-time American League Most Valuable Player, an eight-time All-Star and a two-time All-Star MVP in nine seasons (the Angels’ Trout).
‘‘Some people are going to call me crazy,’’ Jimenez began — and, really, someone should have stopped him right there — ‘‘but [Robert] is going to be the next Mike Trout. Because he has five tools and he plays hard, like Mike Trout.’’
On Sunday, in the warmth of spring training, Jimenez was at it again, likening Robert to a man who well might go down as one of the best players in baseball…