Powerful, transcendent, unworldly and phenom are just a few adjectives that describe the Angels AL MVP frontrunner Shohei Ohtani when he steps onto the baseball field each and everyday. With 47 games remaining in the regular season (including tonight), the Angels sit outside of the playoff bubble, 8.5 games back of the Boston Red Sox for the final AL Wild Card berth.
The Angels began the week in the right direction taking the first game of the Tuesday doubleheader against the Blue Jays by the final of 6-3, but have only mustered two runs on eight hits in the last 16 innings in back-to-back losses. As the regular season finale between these two ball clubs wraps up tonight, Halos manager Joe Maddon will send Shohei Ohtani to the mound for the 17th time, while batting leadoff.
“ShoTime” enters tonight’s start 6-1 with a 2.93 ERA and 106 strikeouts in 86 innings pitched. As you dive deeper into Ohtani’s pitching numbers, since the All-Star break he has flexed on opposing teams, slinging a 0.95 ERA in 19 innings pitched and a 0.68 WHIP. Even with all of the dynamic pitching Ohtani has done on the mound, he still leads all of baseball with 38 home runs, 67 extra-base hits and a .654 slugging percentage.
On the bump for the Blue Jays will be newly acquired Jose Berrios making his third start since being dealt from the Minnesota Twins. The Puerto Rico native enters today 8-5 with a 3.23 ERA and a 1.03 WHIP in 22 starts. Berrios and the Angels have two games of history dating back to earlier this year when he was pitching for the Twins. Berrios picked up the win back on May 20 at Angel Stadium allowing three earned runs in five innings, while the Halos returned the favor with a close 2-1 victory on July 24 at Target Field.
Shortstop Jose Iglesias returns to action tonight after a day off yesterday. “Havana Magic” over the past week has been swinging a hot stick batting .333 (5-for-15) with a home run, three runs batted in and three doubles. Batting in the middle of the order (5th through 7th) brings out the best in his bat as Iglesias is batting .280 (79-for-282) in 75 games with six home runs and 30 runs batted in.
Angels News & Notes
- C Max Stassi is undergoing tests to see if he can be available to play defense if necessary tonight. X-rays last night came back negative, so he is listed as day-to-day after taking a HBP off the left forearm last night
- RHP Steve Cishek has been reinstated from the bereavement list and is active for tonight’s game. In a corresponding move, RHP Aaron Slegers was optioned to Triple-A Salt Lake
- LHP Ky Bush (Angels 2021 2nd Round Pick) will make his professional debut tonight with High-A Tri-City Dust Devils