It was Shohei Ohtani day again. This time he pitched 4 and 2/3 innings, 5 K, 5 hits, 2 ER, 2 Walks. He also went 1/3 with a bunt hit and played RF for 2 innings. The bullpen did well as well, 5 1/3 innings, just 1 ER. But the offense managed only 2 runs which was not enough today.
Ohtani the Pitcher
The first inning started well, 2 straight strikeouts. But then 2 out syndrome kicked in. Back to back hits meant 1-0 Cleveland. In the home half, 1-2-3 went 1-2-3.
In the second, a walk was the only damage, and he struck out 2. For the bottom of the 2nd, it was again down in order. Still 1-0 Cleveland.
For the third frame, Ohtani worked fast, getting 3 quick outs to send the offense back out there. After 2 quick outs, Fletcher hit one into the sun… for a triple! Then Chruches doubled him in, tied game! Ohtani was up for the second time, and he lined out.
Shohei went back out there and allowed a ground rule double. But a lucky bounce meant he was thrown out stealing third. No other runners and he made it through 4 with only 59 pitches thrown. He was rewarded with a second run thanks to Walsh squeaking one over the line in RF. 2-1 Angels.
That did not last as a leadoff homerun off Shohei tied the game up yet again. Another hit got Maddon concerned, especially with the velocity on all pitches down. So much that after a walk, a GIDP, and a walk, his day was done… as a pitcher that is.
Ohtani the Position Player
So after 4 and 2/3 innings, Ohtani was pulled over concern with fatigue most likely. But his day was not done, as he was sent to RF. Upton moved to center, and Rojas moved to left. The OF defense was now even more suspect as Watson came in relief. He did get the out and it was offense time. Said offense went down in order though.
Watson came out for more, which was a relief as innings were needed badly. What was not a relief was the hits that were given up, allowing a run to score. 3-2 Cleveland. Cishek came in to pitch next and he got the final 2 outs. Shohei led off the inning with a bunt base hit… and got thrown out trying to steal second. No runs this time.
That was the end of Ohtani’s day. 4 2/3 innings, 1/3 at the plate, played RF for a bit. He did a bit of everything. It would be up to the rest of the team to win the game as he left with the team behind 3-2.
Game sans Ohtani
Strickland came in to pitch the 7th and gave up a leadoff walk. A sac bunt was the only out he recorded as another batter hit a single to put runners on the corners. Quijada came in to relieve the reliever. He got a flyout and Hot Pocket threw out the runner at home! Too bad the offense did nothing in the bottom half.
Quijada was back out there again and in the 1 run game he sent them down in order. It was up to the offense to do something. Suzuki hit a single. So did Fletch, but Suzuki was thrown out at 2nd due to his slow speed. Churches grounded out into a fielder’s choice. Gosselin came in to bat for the pitcher and ground out.
Slegers came in for the 9th, and had some scares but got out of it still 3-2 Cleveland. Last chance for the offense to win the game. Leading off was a pop up by Rendon. Then, a strikeout by Walsh. But, hope, as Justin Upton walked. A runner on for Rojas. Jose Rojas struck out to end the game.
The Angels are now 18-24 on the season. They face the Twins twice tomorrow starting at 1. Next game right after that one. Please drink responsibly.