HOU@LAA: Trout leaves the game with hamstring injury

ANAHEIM -- Mike Trout's right hamstring, which forced him to leave Sunday's game in the sixth inning, felt "a lot better" heading into Monday's series opener against the Indians, but the Angels opted to give their superstar outfielder a full day to rest it.

"I wanted to play," Trout said, "but I don't need to push it."

Josh Hamilton -- batting .359 in his last nine games -- started in Trout's place in the No. 3 spot of the lineup, with Peter Bourjos playing center field, Kole Calhoun in right and Hank Conger moving up to the No. 5 spot.

"Mike is a little sore right now so we're going to stay away from him today and see how he progresses in the next day or two," Angels manager Mike Scioscia said. "You definitely want to err on the side of caution with hamstrings."

This was only the second time Trout has been absent from the Angels' lineup. The other time came on June 30, and it was also because of a right hamstring injury. That injury fully healed, though, and Trout said the new one is in a different spot.

The 22-year-old felt the hamstring grab on him while legging out a double in the third inning of Sunday's 7-5 loss to the Astros. He later scored on a single from Mark Trumbo, then flied out in the bottom of the fifth and was replaced by Calhoun to start the sixth.

Trout came in early on Monday and got some treatment. He didn't require an MRI, doesn't feel it grabbing on him the way it did 24 hours ago and only feels "a little sore."

He hopes to play on Tuesday.

"That's the plan," said Trout, who has a .333/.430/.574 slash line in his first 122 games.

"It's just one of those things where you don't want to push it. You always have to have the mentality that you're going to play, and if the trainers don't think it's a good idea, then you have to trust them. I trust their decision. We'll see how it is tomorrow."

Wilson confident Hamilton will return to form

HOU@LAA: Hamilton's dinger evens the score at 3

ANAHEIM -- C.J. Wilson has a long history with struggling slugger Josh Hamilton, and the Angels starter has no doubt Hamilton will revert back to his traditional form next season.

"A hundred percent, because you've seen flashes of it," Wilson said Monday. "The last couple of games, he's been driving the ball. I have no doubt, personally, because I played with him for so long [in Texas]. I know what he's capable of. And everybody else does, too. That's why they aren't throwing him strikes."

Hamilton has been on a good run lately, homering in back-to-back games heading into Monday's series opener against the Indians and carrying a .366 batting average over his previous 10 games. But his season has been mired by an inability to build on the occasional hot streak, his slash line still at .230/.285/.425 over his first 116 games.

With the Rangers from 2008-12, it was .305/.363/.549.

"Hitting has always been the easy thing for him," Wilson said. "When there was an offseason issue or an off-field distraction or people getting on his case or whatever, he just went out there and hit. That's a very difficult thing to maintain indefinitely.

"I think guys have adjusted to his aggressiveness this year, and I think he's adjusted back and he's been drawing more walks recently and hitting for extra bases. It's funny because the stuff that he's struggling with now is the stuff that a lot of guys struggle with at a lot younger age. His talent creates a different level of expectations."

Worth noting

Howie Kendrick worked out prior to Monday's game, but is not quite ready to be activated from the disabled list.

"I know he's been feeling better, but translating into how he is for what he has to do out there on the baseball field, there's still some things he has to work through," manager Mike Scioscia said.

Kendrick, recovering from a hyperextended left knee, is eligible to come off the DL Wednesday, but it remains to bee seen if that will happen. The Angels also have an off-day Thursday and could wait until Friday to activate Kendrick.

"I'll wait to get a report on exactly how it is, but I'm not going to speculate yet," Scioscia said. "He's close, he's making progress. As to how close, we'll see."

• The Angels placed left-handed pitcher Jason Vargas and shortstop Erick Aybar on revocable waivers according to Foxsports.com.

The claiming period for each player ends Wednesday.

Vargas was acquired by the Angels in the offseason and is a free agent at the conclusion of this year. Aybar is under contract until 2016.