Thursday, Shohei Ohtani’s fame grew by a huge amount.
Ohtani pitched a complete game for the first time in his MLB career just one day after the Los Angeles Angels reportedly pulled him off the trade market before Tuesday’s deadline. He only let the Detroit Tigers get one hit and struck out eight batters as the Angels beat them 6-0.
That was the first game of two. Elias Sports Bureau says that no one has ever done what Ohtani did in Game 2: hit a home run in one game of a doubleheader and then throw a no-hitter in the other game.
He hit two home runs.
Ohtani hit his 37th and 38th home runs of the season, giving him a bigger lead over the rest of MLB. They also increased Ohtani’s home run pace from 57.4 to 59.8 per season. With Aaron Judge’s record of 62 home runs in the American League in sight, Thursday will be a very big day.
On the pitching side, the last time Ohtani went more than eight innings in a game was almost six years ago, in his last game for the Nippon-Ham Fighters. It was the last of his 13 complete games in NPB. In his MLB career, he had pitched eight innings five times, but not since September 29, 2022.
According to the team, the Angels took Ohtani out of the second game of the doubleheader in the seventh inning because he was getting cramps. The second leg was won by the Angels 11–4.
It was an amazing show, but it wasn’t unique. Rick Wise, a pitcher for the Philadelphia Phillies, threw a shutout and a no-hitter on June 23, 1971. He also hit two home runs in the same game.
Shohei Ohtani will stay with the Angels, which makes his chances of winning AL MVP even better.
Ohtani’s AL MVP odds, which were already very high, went up after this news. At BetMGM, they went from -1000 on Thursday to an unbelievable -10000.
This happened a day after it was said that the Angels decided to keep Ohtani instead of trading him for prospects and starting a new era after Ohtani. The Angels are going for it. On Wednesday, they bought two players from the Chicago White Sox: starting pitcher Lucas Giolito and reliever Reynaldo López.
The Angels are 53-49 and 3.5 games behind the Toronto Blue Jays for the third AL wild-card spot. The Boston Red Sox and New York Yankees are ahead of them. The second game of Thursday’s doubleheader is still going on. In addition to the trade for Giolito and the fact that Ohtani still exists, the good news is that Mike Trout should be back next month to help Anaheim’s playoff push.