ANAHEIM, California – Shohei Ohtani adheres to a strict routine in almost every aspect of her life. When his latest start was delayed by 12 minutes due to a pre-match ceremony in honor of the 2002 World Series of Los Angeles champions, his meticulous preparation hit him off before he even threw the field.
A slightly uneven start, however, led to the second consecutive incredible night for the two-way superstar.
Ohtani scored a record 13 in his career in eight dominant innings with two strokes, and the American League MVP also reached base three times in Los Angeles ’5-0 win over Kansas City Royals on Wednesday.
After giving up two singles to start that delayed first inning, Ohtani (6-4) retired 16 consecutive Royals and 23 of the last 24 hitters he faced. While corresponding to the longest start of his career in the major leagues, he allowed only one baserunner in the last seven innings – in a walk that was quickly erased by a double play.
“I think the biggest thing was that zero in the first inning after giving up those first two goals,” Ohtani said through his interpreter. “I could have done it, and it set the tone of the game. I wanted to go as far as I could, but I didn’t really think about the number of pitches at the start of the game.”
Against the backdrop of a rare lightning storm in Southern California that illuminated the sky far beyond the central field on Big A, Ohtani also had one and two walks behind a plate in his latest electrified two-way performance.
One night after Ohtani hit two Homers in three runs and achieved a record eight runs in his career with an extra inning defeat, he set a personal strikeout record by cheering on Emanuel Rivera on his 108th and final field.
“He just put us on our backs,” Angela’s interim manager Phil Nevin said. “I was thinking of throwing him out at eight, and he was adamant: ‘No. This is mine. I’m staying.’ … What a day. What a show. “
David McKinnon scored his first major league hit with an RBI single in seventh place for the Angels, who avoided the series with their fourth win in a total of six games. Luis Rengifo had an RBI duplicate in the seventh before scoring on that single to the right of McInnon, who got his first RBI of his career two innings with a previously sacrificed lightning bolt.
After scoring 18 runs in the previous two games at Angel Stadium, the Royals have been ruled out for the second time in four days and the 10th time this season. Kansas City still won five of seven.
“It was a show,” said Royal Club manager Mike Mateni. “It is a very unique repertoire of the field. I don’t think you’ll find as many guys with as many weapons as we saw today. He threw three different skaters, plus a cutter and a curve. When the split started, that’s when the strikeouts really started happening, and he has 100 (mph) in the tank that he barely showed … It’s going to be a tough day for the board. “
Ohtani has been unbeaten lately, allowing only one run in the last 20 innings in three starts. In his last home start two weeks ago, he threw seven innings of the ball in one run, and also recorded a victory that broke the Angels’ franchise record of 14 games.
Wit Maryfield and Andrew Benintendi stood out in the first two shots of the Royals against Ohtani, but he later rejected every shot he faced until Maryfield drew one exit in the sixth – and Benintendi quickly moved on to a double play.
Ohtani’s fast ball twice reached a speed of 99 mph in the second half of his start as he confused Kansas City, receiving an incredible 34 combined strokes on swing-and-misses or called shots.
Daniel Lynch (3-7) was not so efficient for the Royals at the beginning, but the left-hander cleverly turned off the Angels until they filled the bases in the fifth in two moves and once in the field. Lynch, who left after sacrificing McKinnon, gave up three goals and five walks on a 104-fold career.
Mike Trout got a day off for the Angels, leaving their heavy lineup definitely without a hit. But MacKinnon came off as an incredible clean-up striker, scoring his first major league goal after being called up last weekend for his MLB debut.
McKinnon was pleased with his penetrating momentum, but he was thrilled with other aspects of the game as well.
“I have to play on the field behind Shohei and I see how good he is,” McInnon said. “It’s crazy to be here.”
Royal: C Salvador Perez was sitting after he injured his left thumb again on Tuesday night, but Mateni said that the team is still determining the severity of the injury after the MRI examination.
Angels: RHP Jimmy Herget has been on the list of injured for 15 days with a right shoulder injury. Right-handed Elvis Peguero and Oliver Ortega came from Triple-A Salt Lake, while inconsistent rookie Reid Detmers fell just six starts after not hitting.
Royals: Zack Greinke is expected to be on the injured list on Friday to start when Kansas City opens a three-weekend series at home against Oakland. Greinke (0-4, 5.05 ERA) went to IL three weeks ago with a strained forearm.
Angels: After a day off at home, Los Angeles opens a three-game weekend series against Seattle on Friday night. Neither team confirmed the starter.
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