The two-way star Shohei ohtani, who has been on a losing streak since participating in the Home Run Derby and All-Star Game last week, he stayed out of the lineup of the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim today Friday with veteran left-hander, JA Happ, starting with the Minnesota Twins.
Japan’s Ohtani, who leads the majors with 34 home runs, has struggled a bit to open the second half as he hit .167 (4 of 24) with a home run, a double and 14 strikeouts in six games. He went 0-for-4 with three strikeouts in the series opener against the Twins on Thursday:
He also fared slightly better against right-handers than left-handers this year, hitting .273 / .374 / .675 with 23 homers and 53 RBIs in 243 plate appearances against right-handers, while hitting .267 / .323 / .664 with 11 home runs and. 21 RBIs in 127 plate appearances against ‘sinister’.
It gives Ohtani a rare day off, as he appeared in 90 of the club’s 96 games as a hitter. He also made 14 starts on the mound, going 4-1 with a 3.21 ERA with 95 strikeouts in 73 innings. He has batted himself in 11 of those outings. His next start is scheduled for Monday against the Colorado Rockies at Angel Stadium.
First baseman Jared Walsh also stayed out of the lineup with Happ on the mound. Walsh, an All-Star like Ohtani, is hitting .185 (5 of 27) in six games in the second half. Walsh is also much better against right-handers, hitting .328 / .392 / .620 with 15 home runs against them compared to .164 / .190 / .361 with seven home runs against lefties.
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With Ohtani and Walsh out, veteran outfielder Justin Upton got the nod as a designated hitter, while Phil Gosselin started at first base.