Los Angeles Angels pitcher and batter Shohei Ohtani proved once again that he is a force to be reckoned with after putting in a stunning performance from both sides in two nights.
Ohtani, 27, had one of the best attacking games of his career so far on Tuesday. The athlete was 3-for-4 against the Kansas City Royals, with two home runs and a career-high eight RBIs (runs batted in).
Though the Angels lost 12-11 to the Royals, Ohtani returned the following night to hit another career high, and this time it was on the mound.
At Angels Stadium on Wednesday, the Japanese baseball player struckout 13 batters, surpassing his career-high performance. against the Houston Astros in April with one strikeout.
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The American League MVPs performing on Tuesdays and Wednesdays made him the first baseball player in American League and National League history to have at least eight RBIs in one game and knock out more than 10 players the next day.
†He just put us on his back,” Angels interim manager Phil Nevin said of Ohtani’s performance. “It was just impressive. I thought about taking him out after the seventh, but he was adamant, “This is mine.” What a day, what a performance from him.”
Ohtani retired 23 of the last 24 batters he faced on Wednesday, and so did he two hits allowed in eight innings.
“There’s still the ‘wow’ factor,” said Royals second baseman and outfielder Whit Merrifield. “Nobody else does what he does. Absolutely just a unique player who only comes once in a generation, and it’s nice to take the field with him.”
The only baseball player to have had at least 10 strikeouts and eight RBIs in a single game in a season or career before Ohtani was former Atlanta Braves righthander Tony Cloninger after he struckout 12 batters on April 12, 1966 and had nine RBIs on July 3, 1966.
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Ohtani is now the 19th player in Angels history to strike out 13 in a game. The last Angels player to strikeout 13 was Patrick Sandoval in a game against the Minnesota Twins on July 24, 2021.
The Player of the Year 2021 currently hits .260/.336/.487 with 45 RBIs, 15 home runs and seven stolen bases in his 298 at bats as a batter. Ohtani also currently has a 2.90 ERA (run earned average) and strikeouts 90 in 68.1 innings as a pitcher.
Featured image via MLB