Shohei Ohtani showed some excitement as the Los Angeles Angels came back to defeat the New York Yankees on Monday night, 4-3, as the Bronx Bombers continue their downward trend.
Ohtani’s big moment came against Michael King in the bottom of the seventh inning with the Angels trailing by two runs. With a runner on first and down at 1-2, Ohtani hit a pitch that was far but in the middle of the zone. Yankees catcher José Treviño knew the ball was gone immediately.
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As Ohtani watched the ball fly out of Angel Stadium, he added an epic bat toss for good measure. It was his 35th home run of the season. Los Angeles would win the game in the tenth inning.
Ohtani’s name has been mentioned in trade rumors as the August 1 deadline approaches. Angels owner Arte Moreno insisted earlier in the year that the team would not seek to trade him, but a rescue from King and the Angels entering nine games behind the Texas Rangers for first place in the West on Monday the American League could turn things around.
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Angels manager Phil Nevin said Ohtani really wants to win.
«He wants to win in the worst way. It’s been frustrating for him the last two weeks as it is for everyone,» Nevin said. «He wants to win and he wants to win here.»
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If another team acquires Ohtani, they’ll have to be in the running to pay him once he hits free agency next season. MLB insiders have speculated that Ohtani could land a long-term contract worth up to $600 million next season. If that happens, it would be the richest contract in baseball history.
Associated Press contributed to this report.