Shohei Ohtani might not be able to pitch right now Authentic Geron Christian Jersey , but he can still hit.
At least, that’s what the Los Angeles Angels are counting on as they try to get back into the American League’s wild-card race.
The two-way Japanese sensation was activated from the disabled list prior to Tuesday’s series opener against the host Seattle Mariners. Ohtani batted sixth and went 0-for-4 with three strikeouts as the Angels lost 4-1.
It was Ohtani’s first game since June 6, when he suffered a Grade 2 sprain of the ulnar collateral ligament in his right elbow
“Hopefully it’ll be a good spot (in the order) for him to hit,” Angels manager Mike Scioscia told MLB.com before the game. “But we’re also just trying to get him acclimated. You don’t want to put too much pressure where he’s to say, ‘I’ve got to do so much,’ because he’s hitting higher in the lineup. I think it’s a good spot for him to see some pitches.”
The Angels went 8-14 while Ohtani was out and dropped 11 games behind Seattle in the chase for the AL’s second and final wild-card berth.
Ohtani, who batted .289 with six home runs and 20 RBIs in his first 34 games of the season, was cleared to begin hitting last week. He took batting practice and faced live pitching in simulated games over the weekend.
“He’s not being rushed,” Scioscia said. “He had a very aggressive workout this weekend and was cleared by our medical department. He would not be playing here if he wasn’t cleared by our medical department. We’re very comfortable that he’s ready.”
When Ohtani (4-1 Miles Killebrew Jersey , 3.10 ERA) will return to the mound is another question. Angels general manager Billy Eppler said last week that Ohtani would be re-evaluated in three weeks to determine whether he’d be able to pitch again this season.
The Angels didn’t announce right-hander Garrett Richards (4-4, 3.42 ERA) as Wednesday afternoon’s starter until after Tuesday’s defeat. Richards is 6-4 with a 3.05 ERA in 20 career appearances against the Mariners, including 12 starts.
Richards has already faced Seattle twice at Safeco Field this season. He beat the Mariners 5-0 on May 4, allowing four hits in 6 2/3 innings with one walk and eight strikeouts. On June 13, he lasted just two innings in an 8-6 loss, giving up two runs on four hits.
Right-hander Mike Leake (8-4, 4.01 ERA), who has won five of his past six decisions, is scheduled to start for Seattle. He’s 3-1 with a 2.49 ERA in four career starts against the Angels. He suffered the loss in the 5-0 defeat on May 4 Randall Cobb Jersey , allowing three runs on seven hits and four walks in 5 1/3 innings. But he beat Los Angeles 6-3 on June 12, allowing one run on four hits in six innings.
The Mariners have won a season-high eight straight games.
“It’s a real good run we’re on, coming off a sketchy run on the East Coast (losing five of six to the New York Yankees and Boston),” Mariners manager Scott Servais said. “The guys bounced back … it’s not always pretty, but we certainly compete very well.”
Yankees second baseman Gleyber Torres was placed on the 10-day disabled list on Wednesday because of a strained right hip.
Torres was removed after striking out in his second at-bat in the fourth inning before the Yankees went on to beat the Atlanta Braves 6-2.
Before the series finale against the National League East leaders, Yankees manager Aaron Boone was upbeat about the status of his prized rookie.
Torres did not start in Tuesday night’s win, but entered the game late as a defensive replacement.
”We’re hoping it’s a short stint. But we think we’ve got to deal with it this time because there is a small strain there,” Boone said outside the home clubhouse after the game.
”Hopefully it won’t be something that it’s too long. Probably take us up to the All-Star break.”
Boone said the club would assess the situation with a day off Thursday before heading to Toronto for the start of an 11-game, three-city road trip leading into the All-Star Game in Washington.
Torres is hitting .294 with 15 home runs and 42 RBIs in his first 63 major league games.
He had an MRI and was not available to talk to reporters after the game.
Neil Walker T.J. Jones Jersey , who went over from third base to second at the start of the fifth inning, could get most of the work in Torres’ absence.
Another option could be Ronald Torreyes, but he’s been on the temporary inactive list at Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre for more than a week to deal with a personal issue. Brandon Drury, who started 114 games at second for Arizona last season, could also figure into the mix.
Boone wasn’t sure how the injury initially occurred, pointing out that Torres had made some ”good base running plays a couple of nights ago when he moved up on some wild pitches.”
The Yankees manager also added that if the injury had occurred late in the season, it would’ve been ”possible” for the phenom to be back on the field shortly.
But the team with the second-best record in baseball took the safe route.
”Anytime you’re talking about groin, hamstring, quads Authentic Troy Apke Jersey , once you have a strain in there, you push through it you can make it a worse strain,” Boone said.
”And now you’re talking weeks and months. Stuff like that. So I think the wise thing is to do this now. Gleyber wants to take a couple of days, work through it. But I think he also understands this is the best thing for him and for us.”