Angels’ Star Shohei Ohtani Delivers Near No-Hit Performance Against the Athletics

Los Angeles Angels starting pitcher Shohei Ohtani in 2018
Los Angeles Angels starting pitcher Shohei Ohtani in 2018. Photo by Peter Joneleit/CSM/REX/Shutterstock (9635290f)

The Los Angeles Angels’ Shohei Ohtani continues to make a push for back-to-back MVP honors. The two-way star delivered a sensational performance in a 4-2 win over the Oakland Athletics and almost came up with a no-hit game.

Ohtani was perfect throughout until the eighth inning when Conner Capel ended his no-hit bid with an infield single to shortstop Livan Soto. Dermis Garcia also got one hit on Ohtani, who finished the contest with a 2.35 ERA and 10 strikeouts. The 28-year-old also had two hits and one RBI as the Angels’ designated hitter.

“To be honest, the velocity on my fastball wasn’t as fast as normal,” said Ohtani through an interpreter. “But my slider was doing its thing and was working. I’m kind of surprised with my stuff today.”

After winning his first AL MVP award last season, Shohei Ohtani is among the favorites to repeat in 2022. He has a 15-8 record as a starter with a 2.35 ERA and an impressive 213 strikeouts. On top of that, he is batting .275 with 94 RBIs and 34 homers.

Ohtani’s biggest competition for the MVP honors is the New York Yankees’ Aaron Judge. The star outfielder is in the midst of a career year that saw him tie Roger Maris’ AL record for most home runs in a single season with 61. Judge is also in conversation to take the Triple Crown, being first in home runs (61) and RBIs (130) and second in batting average (.313).