Angels’ Ohtani homers in 3 straight at-bats against Blue Jays, Tigers

Detroit News
Associated Press |  The Detroit News

Toronto – Shohei Ohtani hit his major league-leading 39th home run – for a streak of three homers in three at-bats over two games – before being sidelined due to cramping for a second consecutive game.

Ohtani was replaced by pinch-hitter Michael Stefanic when his at-bat came up with the bases loaded in the ninth inning due to leg cramps. The Blue Jays beat the Angels 4-1 Friday.

Los Angeles manager Phil Nevin said Ohtani was removed because of cramping in both of his calves.

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“We’ll evaluate it tomorrow when he gets up,” Nevin said. “It’s just cramping right now. It’s kind of in both legs. He’s done a lot of work the last two days and wasn’t able to go.”

Ohtani homered twice in the second game of a doubleheader at Detroit on Thursday before leaving with cramps. He threw an eight-strikeout, one-hitter in the opener for his first career MLB shutout.

The two-way superstar became the first player to throw a shutout in one game of a doubleheader and hit one homer – much less two – in the other.

Thursday’s performance against the Tigers came hours after the team confirmed Ohtani will stay with the Angels for the rest of the season before he becomes a free agent.

Nevin said Ohtani’s soreness developed after he grounded out to begin the eighth inning.

“He came in and was trying to get some work done and just kept cramping up,” Nevin said.

Stefanic struck out looking at a 3-2 pitch from right-hander Jordan Romano as Toronto ended the Angels’ four-game winning streak.

On Friday, Ohtani homered on the first pitch he faced, going deep in three straight at-bats. His drive to right came off Blue Jays right-hander Kevin Gausman and traveled 397 feet.

Ohtani streak of homers ended when he struck out swinging on a 2-2 pitch from Gausman in the third. He singled off Gausman in the sixth and grounded out to shortstop against left-hander Tim Mayza in the eighth, slowing up as he approached first base.

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