For the second time this season, Shohei Ohtani dazzled with his unique brand of two-way dominance.
The Los Angeles Angels star earned his first pitching win since 2018 during a brilliant performance against the Texas Rangers at Globe Life Field on Monday.
Ohtani struck out a season-high nine batters over five innings while scattering three hits and two walks. He allowed four runs, all of which came in the first inning before the hurler settled down.
Ohtani tormented the Rangers on both sides of the ball while once again hitting for himself during his start.
He went 2-for-3 with a walk, two RBIs, and three runs scored as the Angels’ No. 2 hitter. The slugger showed off an array of offensive skills, lacing an RBI double in the second and bunting his way aboard in the sixth.
Ohtani became the first American League pitcher to record two-plus hits and score three-plus runs in a game since the Twins’ Jim Perry on May 1, 1971, according to Angels communications manager Matt Birch.
He’s also now the first player with three runs scored as a hitter and nine strikeouts as a pitcher since Cleveland’s Luis Tiant in 1967, according to Stats By Stats.
“If you weren’t entertained by watching him tonight, you can’t be entertained by watching baseball,” Angels manager Joe Maddon said, according to Jack Harris of the Los Angeles Times.
The 26-year-old is hitting .300/.341/.675 with five doubles and an AL-leading seven home runs. As a pitcher, he owns a 3.29 ERA with 23 strikeouts.
Los Angeles finished with 16 hits during its 9-4 win over Texas.