Shohei Ohtani Removed from Angels vs. Padres as Pitcher Because of Blister

Shohei Ohtani Removed from Angels vs. Padres as Pitcher Because of Blister

Doric SamJuly 5, 2023

SAN DIEGO, CALIFORNIA - JULY 04: Shohei Ohtani #17 of the Los Angeles Angels pitches during the first inning against the San Diego Padres at PETCO Park on July 04, 2023 in San Diego, California. (Photo by Orlando Ramirez/Getty Images)

Orlando Ramirez/Getty Images

Los Angeles Angels two-way star Shohei Ohtani had his start against the San Diego Padres cut short on Tuesday.

The Angels announced that Ohtani was removed from the game as a pitcher due to a blister on the middle finger of his right hand. Jo Adell later pinch-hit for him, though it may have been due to the fact that it was an 8-1 game at the time.

Jeff Fletcher @JeffFletcherOCR

It looks like Jo Adell is going to hit for Shohei Ohtani.

I wouldn’t conclude this necessarily means that Ohtani is unable to hit. But it’s 8-1 and they may just want Adell to get an AB.

Ohtani gave up five earned runs on seven hits with five strikeouts in five innings of work before he was pulled from the mound, and he went 0-for-3 at the plate. It was just the third time he’s given up so many runs during a start this season, and the first time since May 15. The Angels went on to lose the game 8-5.

Ohtani told reporters afterward, “We’ll see going forward the next three games” about hitting during Los Angeles’ remaining matchups before the All-Star break. He also added that he is unlikely to pitch during the All-Star Game, which will be played on July 11.

“I think it’s going to be pretty tough. As of now, I’m planning on not pitching in the game,” he said.

Entering Tuesday’s start, Ohtani had a 7-3 record with a 3.02 ERA and 127 strikeouts. He has thrived at the plate during his starts, slashing .407/.500/.780 with five homers and 12 RBI in his 16 previous appearances on the mound. Overall, he leads the majors with 31 home runs and is tied for second with 68 RBI while hitting .303/.390/.664.

Despite Ohtani putting forth another MVP-caliber campaign, the Angels rank third in the AL West with a 45-42 record entering Tuesday. Los Angeles dropped the series opener to San Diego 10-3 on Monday, the team’s fifth loss in its previous six games.

The Angels haven’t made it to the playoffs since 2014 and they haven’t had a winning record since 2015.

Los Angeles is surely hoping to end those droughts this year, but it will need Ohtani to continue to lead the way. It remains to be seen if the blister on his right hand will continue to affect him going forward, which would be detrimental to the Angels’ hopes.

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