Shohei Ohtani to Miss Rest of 2019 Due to Knee Surgery

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

With the Los Angeles Angels out of postseason contention in the midst of yet another disappointing season, the team has decided to put a premature end to sophomore sensation Shohei Ohtani’s season.

Despite not having exhibited any outward signs of injury down the stretch with the AL West team, Angels GM Billy Eppler announced on Thursday that Ohtani was set to undergo a procedure to fix a bipartite patella in his left knee. This is a genetic condition that causes some humans to be born with a kneecap that contains two parts instead of one solid bone.

This condition, despite not hampering Ohtani at the plate, was apparently causing discomfort for the two-way player while throwing. The Japanese player hasn’t featured as a pitcher this season after undergoing Tommy John surgery in 2018.

Ohtani has been a rare bright spot for an underachieving Angels team in 2019. The 25-year-old, who serves as the team’s primary designated hitter, putting up a .286/.343/.505 slash line with 18 home runs in 106 games.

The Japanese phenom is expected to make a full recovery from surgery within two to three months and return to the team as both a hitter and pitcher for next season.