Los Angeles Angels’ Shohei Ohtani, 29, has been diagnosed with elbow ligament damage and will be done pitching this season.
“Ohtani lasted just 1⅓ innings in the first game of the doubleheader against Cincinnati before suffering ligament damage in his right elbow,” MLB.com reported on April 24. It’s a big blow for the Angels.”
In 126 games this season, Ohtani is 3-for-44 (142-for-467) with 44 home runs, 91 RBIs and a 1.069 OPS, and in 23 games (132 innings), he is 10-5 with a 3.14 ERA. His stellar performance at the plate has made him a leading candidate for American League MVP, but an elbow injury has kept him from pitching this season.
According to MLB.com, “This is the second time Ohtani has suffered an elbow injury. He suffered the same injury in 2018 and underwent Tommy John surgery (elbow ligament repair), which kept him from pitching in 2019. However, the Angels are awaiting a second opinion on Ohtani before making a decision on surgery.”
[Photo] Shohei Ohtani of the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim. ⓒGettyimages (All rights reserved)
Angels general manager Perry Minassian said, “We performed an MRI between games of the doubleheader and found elbow ligament damage in Ohtani. He will not pitch for the remainder of the season. We’ll do further evaluation and go from there. It’s essentially a minor injury. It’s clear that he can hit. That’s where we are right now.”
After being diagnosed with an elbow injury, Ohtani still wanted to play as the designated hitter in the second game of the doubleheader and followed up his home run in game one with a double in game two. MLB.com reported, “The Angels have yet to decide if they will continue to use Ohtani as a designated hitter or if he should be shut down early and undergo surgery. In 2018, he elected to have Tommy John surgery on Sept. 3, but continued to hit until Oct. 2, when he had the procedure.”
The news of Ohtani’s injury has sent shockwaves through the baseball world. It’s especially concerning because Ohtani is coming off his best season and is set to become a free agent after the season.
[Photo] Mike Trout of the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim.스포츠토토 ⓒGettyimages (All rights reserved)
In the wake of Ohtani’s injury, the Angels dropped both games of a doubleheader to Cincinnati and lost four straight. The Angels are now 61-67 on the season for a .477 winning percentage, good for fourth place in the American League West and the seventh wild-card spot. While they are still mathematically capable of making the postseason, the Angels have a 0% chance of making the postseason according to FanGraphs, making it virtually a miracle for the Angels to make the postseason.
As the Angels’ chances of making it to the postseason are getting slimmer and slimmer, it has been reported that star slugger Mike Trout, who returned from injury on the 23rd, has been placed on the disabled list again. “It’s terrible news for Ohtani, terrible news for his free agency, terrible news for the Angels, terrible news for baseball,” New York Daily News reporter Gary Phillips wrote in his X. “And it’s terrible news for Trout,” he continued. “And a third baseman is back on the disabled list? This team is cursed,” he wrote, bemoaning the Angels’ misfortune.