Ohtani hits 1st homer in majors in 1st at-bat in LA

Esther Moore
April 5, 2018

Ohtani was leaving Japan and heading to Major League Baseball in pursuit of something that has not been done in nearly 100 years.

Babe Ruth would be proud.

Shohei Ohtani's first Major League Baseball home run came in the first inning of his first home game with the Angels. Ohtani also smoked a single in the third, his second trip to the plate.

He is the first player since the 1937 Red Sox' Wes Ferrell to finish his first six games with four hits, a home run, and a win. The 23-year-old did not seem to tire as he got deeper into the start, as he was able to hit 98 miles per hour in his final inning on the mound. Those two appearances had accounted for his only action before Tuesday's game, when Ohtani made some more magic, this time in front of an appreciative home crowd. He was only able to pitch 25 innings in Japan previous year due to an ankle injury, and during spring training, even when he was throwing in minor league, intra-squad, and B games, he never threw more than 85 pitches. In the last 10 seasons, only one pitcher (Alex Cobb) generated more misses in his first career start.

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Ohtani, 23, went 3 for 4 in his debut at Angel Stadium.

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Ohtani went 1-for-5 with a single and a strikeout in his Major League Baseball hitting debut last Thursday against the Oakland Athletics.

In the bottom of the first inning, Ohtani launched a three-run homer off Cleveland Indians starter Josh Tomlin.

The Rangers were among the finalists to sign Ohtani during the off-season.

The Los Angeles Angels baseball player, who is reportedly attempting to become baseball's first regular two-way player in nearly a century, is due to make his next pitching start Sunday 8 at Angel Stadium. But after his performance last night, we may not have to wait as long as we originally thought to see his full abilities as a two-way player on a near nightly basis.

Ohtani is the first player to win as a starting pitcher, then start and homer as a non-pitcher in his next game in the same season since Babe Ruth in 1921, according to STATS LLC. The joke is a Major League tradition for a rookie's first homer. After players broke character and jumped around Ohtani to celebrate, Mike Trout pointed to the field and instructed Ohtani to take a curtain call.

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