Trout, a Millville High School graduate, is the second South Jersey native to win the award in four seasons. Pitcher Andrew Bailey, a graduate of Paul VI High School in Haddon Township, was the AL rookie of the year in 2009.
In Millville, late nights watching Trout play center field on the West Coast became a routine for many in the Cumberland County town of about 28,000, where the Angels' star centerfielder was born, raised, and still lives with his father, Jeff, and mother, Debbie.
"I'd love to see the number of Major League Baseball cable packages that were paid for in our area," Tim Shannon said. "He has created a pride and excitement in the city of Millville that I have not seen in my lifetime."
Shannon said the adjustment to West Coast time could be seen not just in individual homes but also in the local bar scene.
"The local watering holes all bought the MLB package so they could show Mikey's games," Shannon said. "The guys at the Elks Club got the package, and they're always tuned in to the games. The one game it seemed like everybody in town was watching was when they played Detroit and [Justin] Verlander was pitching. Mike starts the game with a home run against him."
The mayor said Mike Trout road trips are also popular among the locals.
"Oh, yes, the Millville folks did a lot of traveling," he said. "I'd hear about people going to Anaheim. Of course, they'd go to the local trips in Baltimore and New York. But they'd also fly to Chicago or Cleveland."
Shannon did not get to Anaheim, but he did see Trout in Arizona during spring training, and he made a trip to Fenway Park in Boston to see his former neighbor, too.
"I had never been to Fenway, so as soon as I saw he was playing there, I decided I was going to make that trip," Shannon said.
He went to dinner with Trout after the game.
"I used to live next door to him, but they moved about five miles from us," Shannon said. "I've known the family since the kids were really small. My daughter used to go to school with him. I'd play Santa Claus at Christmas time."
These days, Trout is Millville's greatest gift because he is one of the world's most gifted athletes. That's why when you enter Mayor Shannon's town, you are welcomed by banners that proudly tell everyone that Millville is Mike Trout's town.
Shannon just wishes he could change one thing.
"Everybody in this town would love to see him in red pinstripes," Shannon said. "I'd have to get another job to pay for season tickets, but I'd be willing to do it. Unfortunately, I don't think the Angels are going to let him go."
Here is what people have said about Mike Trout over the years:
"The best thing about Mike is that he never big-leagued anybody, and [he] acted like one of the guys. . . . We will miss him a lot." - Roy Hallenbeck, Millville High School baseball coach, after Trout's last high school game.
"Anybody who had that kind of confidence and comes here and goes through that, I think is tremendous." - Bud Selig, commissioner of Major League Baseball, after Trout was the only prospect to attend the 2009 player draft in Secaucus, N.J.
"As good a player as he is, Mike is even a better person." - Ken Williams, Millville assistant coach, after Trout was drafted in the first round, 25th overall, in the baseball draft.
"The team wants to move him up quickly, and they think he can be a big-leaguer soon." - Jeff Trout, Mike Trout's father, after Mike Trout signed a contract with the Angels.
"Think of any good intangible, and Mike's got it." - Abe Flores, the Angels director of player development while Trout was in the minor leagues.
"We are so excited I can't even describe it." - Debbie Trout, Mike Trout's mother, the day after he was called up by the Angels.
"He is an awesome kid, a tremendous talent. His mind-set is on another level." - Torii Hunter, Angels all-star, after Trout was promoted.
"His makeup is much further ahead than any 19-year-old I have seen." - Mike Scioscia, Angels manager, after Trout joined his team.
Contact Bob Brookover at email@example.com. Follow on Twitter @brookob.