There’s no denying that Shohei Ohtani (Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim) is one of the hottest names in Major League Baseball right now, both on the field and off.
On April 18 (ET), Ohtani made two starts at designated hitter in the Angels’ 2023 Major League Baseball home opener against the New York Yankees at Angels Stadium in Anaheim, California, and went 3-for-4 with a home run, two RBIs, one run scored, and one walk.
Major League Baseball has been buzzing about Ohtani lately as he approaches free agency. In the early-to-midseason, the Angels made it clear that they would not trade Ohtani no matter what. However, with the recent rash of injuries and the team’s struggles, the Angels have reversed their stance, saying they will listen to trade offers for Ohtani.
While Ohtani is still dealing with a nail and blister on his right middle finger, his hitting ability alone would make him a prime candidate for a team looking to make the postseason and win the World Series. The Baltimore Orioles are reportedly the most likely destination.
While the trade rumors have been noisy, Ohtani’s performance hasn’t been affected. His hitting is back to its peak after a slight lull before the All-Star break. After hitting his 32nd home run of the season in the last game of the first half, Ohtani has now hit in five straight games, including a game-winning solo shot in the ninth inning against the Houston Astros on Saturday and his 34th home run in the ninth inning on Sunday. And the hot streak continued today. 스포츠토토
The hot hitting was on full display right from the start. In his first at-bat with the bases loaded in the bottom of the first inning, Ohtani faced Yankees starter Luis Severino and lined a 95.4 mph (153.5 km/h) four-seam fastball into the right field seats. Back-to-back singles by Mickey Moniak and a Taylor Ward walk put Ohtani on third base, but he was unable to score as the decisive run never came.
The good fortune continued. In his second at-bat with one out in the bottom of the third inning, Ohtani completed his early “multi-hit” performance with a double to left-center field, this time on a high 87.1-mph changeup from Severino. Zack Neto sprinted home from first base, but was unable to overcome the Yankees’ replay, and there was no follow-up hit this time.