June 21, 2021

Ohtani Hits Six Home Runs In Six Days (1.559 OPS), Also Pitches Six Innings Of One-Run Ball

Update: Ohtani was named AL Player of the Week (third time in his career and first since his rookie season of 2018).

Shohei Ohtani has had a decent week.

Tuesday    - 1-4, home run
Wednesday  - 2-4, home run, stolen base
Thursday   - 0-1, 2 walks; 6 IP, 1 RA (6-5-1-1-5, 78)
Friday     - 2-5, 2 home runs, 3 RBI
Saturday   - 1-4, home run, walk, 2 RBI
Sunday     - 1-4, home run, walk, 2 RBI

Totals: 7-for-22 (.318/.423/1.136), 1.559 OPS. 1 single, 6 home runs, 6 runs scored, 9 RBI, 4 walks. And he pitched six strong innings, striking out five and allowing only one run.

Also Sunday, 7th inning:

(There were no runners on base, so it was not a balk. Plus, Ohtani eventually struck out. But still . . . Pitcher Gregory Soto did seem a bit discombobulated. (Oh, like he's ever been bobulated.))

Most homers Through 72 Team Games (Angels)

2021 Shohei Ohtani   23
2018 Mike Trout      23
15 Albert Pujols   23
2000 Troy Glaus      22
1962 Leon Wagner     21

Ohtani is now tied for the major league lead in home runs; Vladimir Guerrero Jr. also has 23 (but he has not pitched yet this season).

The 23 home runs (in 67 games) is a career-high for Ohtani. He hit 22 in 104 games in 2018 (and was voted AL Rookie of the Year).

His most recent dong was the 70th of his career, making him the fourth player in major league history to hit 70+ home runs and have 100+ strikeouts as a pitcher, joining Babe Ruth, Rick Ankiel, and Johnny Lindell.

Ohtani is scheduled to start on the mound on Wednesday against the Giants.

The Yankees turned their third triple play of the season yesterday against Oakland. They are only the sixth team since 1924 to turn three TPs one season:
2021 Yankees
2016 White Sox
1979 Athletics
1979 Red Sox
1965 Cubs
1964 Phillies
1924 Red Sox
1911 Tigers
1890 Rochester
1886 Dodgers
1885 Giants
1882 Reds
They are the first major league team to turn more than one TP in the ninth inning (or later) in the same season.

On Sunday, after the Athletics (trailing 2-1) wasted a one-out triple in the bottom of the eighth, they blew two walks to start the bottom of the ninth. Chapman franked his first two batters (throwing eight balls and one strike) before Sean Murphy grounded into a 5-4-3 game-ending, triple play. Chapman  is the first Yankees pitcher to pitch a complete inning, face only three batters, yet walk two of them, since Wilt Gaston on May 28, 1924

It was the MFY's second triple play in the last four days. On Thursday they turned the first 1-3-6-2-5-6 triple play in major league history. That was also the second triple play in Yankees history to involve five different fielders. On May 22, 1946, in Detroit, after a walk and a single put Tigers at first and third, New York got out of the inning thanks to a well-rehearsed 3-2-5-4-6-4-3-6 triplet killing.

The last time the Athletics hit into a game-ending triple play was on July 24, 1915, in a 12-5 loss to Cleveland. That TP was started by third baseman Walter Barbare, who would later play for the 1918 Red Sox.

The Cubs have been held to four or fewer hits in four straight games (June 17-20, 2021) for the first time since back-to-back doubleheaders on September 3-4, 1905. . . .On June 19, 2021, Eric Sogard became the first Cub to play second base, third base, and pitch in the same game.

The Twins had an inning in which they had a triple and two bases-loaded walks. Doug Kern reports that no team has done that since at least 1950. It's also the second time in Minnesota history (since 1961) that the Twins drew back-to-back bases-loaded walks in extra innings. (Al Hrabosky of the Royals walked Bob Randall and John Castino on May 18, 1979. The Mad Hungarian! . . . That 1979 game also  featured U.L. Washington! He was one of my favourite players in the late 70s because his first two names were (apparently) actually "U" and "L".)
Which Is Worse?

Pittsburgh Pirates, May 27? Or:

Memphis Redbirds, June 20?

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