Angels await word on Shohei Ohtani for rematch vs. O’s

Angels await word on Shohei Ohtani for rematch vs. O's

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The Los Angeles Angels got a look at what playing without superstar Shohei Ohtani might be like on Monday, and they enter the second game of their three-game set against the American League-best Baltimore Orioles on Tuesday wondering what the next few days will bring.

Ohtani felt pain after an awkward swing during batting practice on the field before the Monday contest. The Angels announced that he was experiencing right oblique tightness, and they listed him as day-to-day.

“I don’t want to speculate anything right now,” Los Angeles manager Phil Nevin said after the Angels lost 6-3 to the Orioles on Monday. “He’s gonna get checked in the morning, run some tests in the morning. We’ll see how it goes. He’s pretty sore today.”

The Angels‘ two-way star will be a free agent after this season and most baseball pundits expect him to command a record salary, despite the fact that Ohtani stopped pitching for the season two weeks ago due to a tear of his right ulnar collateral ligament.

Ohtani had only missed two games previously this season, however, so his absence from the lineup may be a short one.

Even when Ohtani was playing, the Angels (64-74) were struggling of late. They have lost four in a row and 23 of 31 since the start of August, and they are facing a Baltimore team with the best record in the AL (86-51).

The Orioles were 25-1 longshots to win the AL East before the season but they hold a 3 1/2-game lead in the division standings, and they have been alone in first place since July 22.

On Tuesday, the Orioles will send right-hander Dean Kremer (12-5, 4.20 ERA) to the mound to face inconsistent Angels left-hander Reid Detmers (3-10, 5.10).

On the surface, Detmers’ stats look fine. The 24-year-old Illinois native has struck out 142 batters over 124 innings while allowing 120 hits and 53 walks.

However, the seesaw nature of his season has been evident over his past three starts. On Aug. 16, Detmers sparkled in 7 1/3 innings of one-hit ball, getting the win in a 2-0 road victory over the Texas Rangers.

Seven days later, he lasted just five innings, giving up four runs in a 7-3 loss to the visiting Cincinnati Reds. Detmers went only four innings and 84 pitches against the Philadelphia Phillies on Wednesday.

The Angels won that game 10-8, but they haven’t won since.

In his career against the Orioles, Detmers is 0-1 with a 1.64 ERA in two starts. Both of those outings occurred last year.

Kremer owns a 2-0 record and a 2.53 ERA in two career starts against the Angels. He has never pitched in Anaheim. Kremer got a win on May 16 against the Angels in Baltimore, where he gave up three runs (including a solo homer to Mickey Moniak) in 5 2/3 innings.

Orioles manager Brandon Hyde had cautioned his team against scoreboard-watching before the Monday game, looking for the result of the game between the second-place Tampa Bay Rays and Boston Red Sox.

“I’m maybe a little bit more guilty than they are,” Hyde said. “I was just watching the Rays game inside. … I’m a huge Red Sox fan this afternoon.”

Hyde got his wish when the Red Sox beat the Rays 7-3.

—Field Level Media

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About the Author

Anthony Barnett
Anthony is the author of the Science & Technology section of ANH.