The first ‘home run king’ from China is born… “I will come back stronger” Ohtani even set a record that only 2 players in ML history have ever achieved As the 162-game journey came to an end, various title holders were finally confirmed. And Shohei Ohtani (LA Angels) created a record that only two players in Major League history have achieved.
Ohtani, who becomes eligible as a free agent after the regular season and postseason schedules are over, was unable to play the entire season this year. The reason was because of injury. Aside from having Tommy John surgery shortly after entering the major leagues, he’s never had a major injury that would have significantly impacted his season, but this year was a little different.스포츠토토
Ohtani took the mound as a starting pitcher in the first game of a doubleheader against the Cincinnati Reds on August 24 (hereinafter Korean time), but he was replaced after pitching only 1⅓ innings. Ohtani missed Game 1 entirely, but appeared as a hitter in Game 2 of the doubleheader, and the injury did not appear to be serious. However, the news that general manager Perry Minassian delivered after the game was a bit shocking. Otani’s right elbow ligament was torn.
Elbow ligament rupture is a serious injury directly related to ‘Tommy John’ surgery. If you undergo Tommy John surgery, it usually takes more than a year to return to the mound. In the case of Ryu Hyun-jin (Toronto Blue Jays), after undergoing surgery last year, he resumed pitching in July of this year and returned to the major leagues in August. Due to recent advances in medical technology, there are players who show off their skills better than before even after undergoing Tommy John surgery. However, there are cases like Noah Syndergaard where the speed drops and the player cannot regain his former form.
Otani was unable to take the mound as a pitcher due to a ruptured right elbow ligament, but he continued to play at the plate. But the evil spirit of injury came again. Ohtani disappeared from the starting lineup the day after the Oakland Athletics game on September 4th. During training, he felt pain in his side, and upon examination, symptoms of inflammation were discovered. Coach Phil Nevin said several times that Ohtani would return to the field soon, but he never returned as his condition did not improve.
Ohtani packed up his locker room on September 16 and was placed on the 17-day injured list (IL), officially ending his season. And Ohtani quickly underwent Tommy John surgery with the goal of being at bat in the opening game of 2024 and performing as a ‘dual-width type’ player starting in the 2025 season. Ohtani had one record as he ended the season early due to injury.
Ohtani appeared in 135 games at the plate this year, recording 151 hits, 44 home runs, 95 RBIs, 102 runs, a batting average of 0.304, and an OPS of 1.066. According to Sarah Langs of MLB.com, Ohtani is the first player in 49 years since Dick Allen in 1974 to hit 9. Despite not hitting a home run since March, he made history as the third player in Major League history to win the home run title.
His records did not stop there. Ohtani became the first Asian Major Leaguer to win the home run title, and he won the title in the major batting category for the first time in 19 years, following the legend Ichiro Suzuki in 2004.
Ohtani visited Angel Stadium, where the match against Oakland will be held on the 1st, and had time to say hello to fans and colleagues. And he also experienced the joy of being selected as the club’s own MVP. After the game, Ohtani said on social media, “Thank you for your support during the regular season. I will soon begin rehabilitation in the United States, and I will do my best to come back stronger than ever. For now, I will focus on rehabilitation for next year’s hitter.” “I look forward to seeing everyone again next year,” he said, expressing his thoughts at the end of the season.
Ohtani, who held the ‘unanimous’ American League MVP title in 2021, is very likely to receive MVP once again this year. Ohtani, who is aiming to step up to the plate in the opening game of the 2024 season, will receive a contract with which team and how big of a contract he will receive through free agency. It is expected to become the hottest topic of this stove league.