Shohei Ohtani hits first major-league homer in debut at Angel Stadium
Shohei Ohtani hits first major-league homer in debut at Angel Stadium
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05 April, 2018, 00:48
Tuesday's feat marked the first time an Major League Baseball player had won a game as a pitcher, then hit a first-inning home run within the next two days, since Ruth did it in 1921 (per Dylan Hernandez of the Los Angeles Times).
Tuesday, while playing DH against the Indians, the 23-year-old showcased his power when he smacked a ball to right-center for his first career home run in his home debut. Things did not get much better from the plate, where Ohtani picked up just four hits in 32 at-bats, finishing spring training with a.125 batting average.
Ohtani became the first player to win as a starting pitcher, then start and hit a home run as a non-pitcher in his next game in the same season since Babe Ruth pulled off the feat in 1921, per the Washington Post.
Infielder for the Angels, Ian Kinsler, said, "It's a lot of fun to see something like that from a guy that has a huge spotlight on his and obviously doesn't let it bother him, comes out and plays extremely well the first week of the season". The two-way player made a strong debut on the mound in Oakland, pitching six innings, giving up three runs and striking out six.
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Justin Upton homered for the Angels in the second inning and Luis Valbuena went deep in the third.
The Angels beat the Indians 13-2, with Ohtani finishing 3-for-4 with three RBI and two runs. Mike Scioscia, Angels' manager, said, "Shohei put on a display of the type of talent he has tonight".
Ohtani said, "I thought it was going to hit the fence". He will pitch against the A's Sunday in his second big league start. The Angels' current plan is to have Ohtani rest the day after a start.
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