Commissioner Rob Manfred said MLB would love to do more to market Los Angeles Angels outfielder Mike Trout, but it is not quite that simple.
Manfred went on to say that Trout, who is a two-time American League MVP and a seven-time All-Star, has to be willing to market himself if the 26-year-old wants to become more popular in the sport.
"Player marketing requires one thing, for sure: the player," Manfred said at his annual All-Star Game press conference, via the Orange County Register.
"You cannot market a player passively. You can't market anything passively. You need people to engage with those to whom you are trying to market in order to have effective marketing."
Trout has been vocal, though, that he does not want to make himself any more of a celebrity than he already is and his focus always has been on winning a World Series rather than gaining personal attention.
He has twice turned down the opportunity to play in the World Baseball Classic, and he has never participated in the Home Run Derby at the All-Star Game.
"I'd rather just have that night with my family, spend time with them," Trout said last week. "I just want to relax and enjoy the day. Just watch it … I just never had any interest in doing it."
Manfred went on to explain that the decision is up to Trout, but the Angels star would have to spend more of his downtime making an effort.
"Mike is a great, great player and a really nice person, but he's made certain decisions with what he wants to do and what he doesn't want to do, and how he wants to spend his free time and how he doesn't want to spend his free time," Manfred said.
"That's up to him. If he wants to engage and be more active in that area, I think we could help him make his brand really, really big, but he has to make a decision that he’s prepared to engage in that area. It takes time and effort."
It appears the Angels caught wind of Manfred's comments as they released a statement on Wednesday, sending praise to Trout and highlighting the marketing work he has done to help MLB.
"Mike Trout is an exceptional ambassador for the game," the statement read, in part. "Combined with his talent, his solid character creates a perfect role model for young people everywhere.
"Each year, Mike devotes a tremendous amount of his time and effort contributing to our organisation, and marketing Major League Baseball. He continually chooses to participate in the community, visiting hospitals, schools and countless other charities."
|Dodgers slugger Machado leaves game after being struck by pitch|
|Harden says Carmelo will ´be a good fit´ for Rockets|
|Morata: I never considered Chelsea exit|
|Gavrilova kicks off title defence in New Haven|
|Lopetegui pleased with Bale and Real Madrid after LaLiga opener|
|It´s a very special moment – Djokovic revels in Golden Masters achievement|
|Sorrentino thanks Ronaldo for support after injury|
|Twins place Santana on DL with finger injury|
|Yankees´ Gregorius suffers ´pretty significant´ heel bruise|
|Snedeker ends PGA Tour drought with Wyndham Championship win|
|Spalletti unconcerned despite Inter´s underwhelming start|
|Djokovic makes history with Masters clean sweep in Cincinnati|
|Real Madrid 2 Getafe 0: Bale gives Lopetegui first LaLiga win|
|IndyCar driver Wickens taken to hospital after crash|
|Sherman calls for NFL to scrap ´idiotic´ helmet rule|
|Sassuolo 1 Inter 0: New-look Nerazzurri given early reality check|
|Hughton: Shock United win does not alter scale of Brighton´s task|
|Navas keeps place as Courtois waits on Madrid debut|
|Ndidi signs long-term Leicester City contract|
|Pandya tears through feeble England to put India in command|
|Alonso creates motorsport history with victory at Silverstone|
|Kovacic: Chelsea and Sarri believe in me|
|Brighton loss a big lesson for United – Pogba|
|Mistakes hit United´s confidence - Mourinho|
|Brighton and Hove Albion 3 Manchester United 2: Murray lifts Seagulls to another win over Mourinho|
|Quickfire Moon treble sets up Rhinos win|
|Manchester City celebrate win with Silva´s son|
|Brentford 2 Sheffield Wednesday 0: Maupay stars as Bees buzz by Owls|
|Guardiola delighted with fit and firing Aguero|
|Waring marks 200th event with maiden title in Gothenburg|
|Guardiola dismisses Mourinho´s ´disrespectful´ accusation|
|Hulkenberg proud to survive in F1´s pay driver era|
|It´s here, it´s real, get on with it - Dyche dismisses Europa League excuse|
|Grujic agrees Liverpool extension, joins Hertha on loan|
|Martial starts as Lukaku, Young return for Manchester United|
|Fury-Wilder to be staged in November or December - Warren|
|Manchester City 6 Huddersfield Town 1: Aguero hits hat-trick as champions triumph|
|Burnley 1 Watford 3: Hornets end away day woes as Deeney leads destructive display|
|McFarland cleared to leave Scotland and join Ulster|
|Simeone wants ´only the best´ for Filipe Luis amid PSG links|
|PSG signing Boateng rated ´50-50´ by Bayern president|
|Cipriani a positive influence, insists Gloucester head coach|
|Bayer Leverkusen´s Bailey signs contract extension|
|Jesus and Aguero start for City as Mahrez misses out|
|Federer unsure what to expect from Djokovic duel|
|Chievo goalkeeper suffers broken nose, whiplash in Ronaldo collision|
|Simmons lauds influence of ´big brother´ LeBron|
|PSG´s Cavani selected by Uruguay as Coito fills in for Tabarez|
|Starc leads tributes after ´leader of the pack´ Johnson retires|
|Hazard confirms he is staying at Chelsea this month|
|Liverpool´s Firmino dreaming of Premier League title glory|
|Raiders rock the Roosters as NRL´s top-four battle hots up|
|Erasmus demands improved Springboks|
|Athletics pull even with Astros in AL West|
|Mercurial quick Johnson retires from cricket|
|MLS Review: Royer leaves it late for Red Bulls, Dallas bounce back|
|Crotty concussed, Folau injured|
|DFB president Grindel sorry Ozil felt ´deserted´|
|Busch picks up first win of season in Night Race|
|NASCAR results at Bristol: Kurt Busch picks up first win of season in Night Race|
|Woakes welcomes back ´big-game player´ Stokes|
|´Genius´ Messi still amazes Valverde|
|All Blacks, Springboks await Namibia at Rugby World Cup|
|Federer to face Djokovic after Goffin withdraws|
|Rain halts plays at Wyndham Championship|
|De Gea will extend contract soon, says Mourinho|
|Halep to meet Bertens in Cincinnati final|
|Frampton set for Warrington fight after dominant Windsor Park win|
|Messi makes LaLiga history with Barcelona´s 6000th goal|
|MC Alger defeat throws quarter-final chase wide open|