Angels’ Shohei Ohtani pulled for pinch hitter in 9th due to cramps

Los Angeles Angels star Shohei Ohtani hit his 39th major league home run against the Toronto Blue Jays on Friday night but was ruled out of the game for a second straight season due to cramps.

Manager Phil Nevin said afterwards that Ohtani was withdrawn from the stadium with cramps in both calves and that he would be re-examined on Saturday. A day earlier, Ohtani had to pull out of the second game of a doubleheader in Detroit due to cramps.

Asked if Ohtani might be on the injured list, Nevin said, “We’re not even thinking about that.”

“We’ll evaluate it tomorrow when he gets up,” Nevin said. “Right now it’s just cramps. It kind of affects both legs. He has been working a lot for the past two days and has not been able to walk.”

Ohtani threw a one-hitter for his first career MLB shutout in Thursday’s opening game against the Tigers and hit two home runs in the second game.

Nevin said Ohtani’s sore muscles developed on Friday night after he was out at the start of the eighth round.

“He came in and tried to get some work done but kept having cramps,” Nevin said.

Ohtani was replaced by pinch-hitter Michael Stefanic when his at-bat came up with loaded bases in the ninth inning. Stefanic struck after a 3-2 throw from right-hander Jordan Romano as Toronto won 4-1, ending the Angels’ four-game winning streak.

After being greeted with loud applause from the sell-out crowd of 42,106 on Friday, Ohtani hit a home run on the first pitch he faced and hit three consecutive at-bats at depth in two games. In Thursday’s opening game, he threw a one-hitter for his first career MLB shutout and hit two home runs in the second game.

Ohtani’s 397-foot drive on Friday went to Blue Jays right-hander Kevin Gausman. His streak of home runs came to an end when he scored a 2-2 win from Gausman in the third. Ohtani scored a single in the sixth and prevailed over left-hander Tim Mayza in the eighth.

Ahead of the game, Nevin said Ohtani would be given an extra day off ahead of his next start, which is scheduled for next Thursday’s home game against Seattle.

Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.

Emma Bowman

Emma Bowman is a USTimesPost U.S. News Reporter based in London. His focus is on U.S. politics and the environment. He has covered climate change extensively, as well as healthcare and crime. Emma Bowman joined USTimesPost in 2023 from the Daily Express and previously worked for Chemist and Druggist and the Jewish Chronicle. He is a graduate of Cambridge University. Languages: English. You can get in touch with me by emailing

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