Ohtani Shohei (29‧ LA Angels) successfully completed the two-hit combination, which was considered impossible in 2021, causing a syndrome in the major leagues. There was a slight difference between the two proportions. In 2021, the blow shone. However, from 2022, he started to keep pace as a pitcher.

Ohtani started 28 games in 2022 and threw 166 innings, 안전놀이터going 15-9 with a 2.33 ERA and striking out 219. Even until 2021, there were some ups and downs in his performance, but last year was completely different. Ohtani also finished fourth in the American League Cy Young Award voting.

He got stronger and stronger on the mound, and that momentum has continued into the early part of this season. Ohtani went 2-0 with an earned run average of 0.47 over 19 innings in his first three appearances. He struck out just 24 in 19 innings.

He had a strong fastball in the upper 90s, a curveball that mercilessly shakes the eye level of hitters who are aiming for the fastball, and a sweeper that curves like a flying saucer. Hitting against Ohtani has become very difficult. As of the 18th (Korean time), Ohtani’s hit rate this season is only 0.091.

He was pitching fewer than three hits this year, throwing five or more innings in every appearance. Last year, including the last four appearances, it was a game of ‘5 or more innings pitched, 3 hits or less’ in 7 consecutive games. Not only is it a record that rewrites the history of the Los Angeles Angels, but there are only three players, including Ohtani, who have accomplished this feat in the entire league.

The only players who have achieved this record since 1893 are Johan Santana in 2004, Jacob deGrom (then New York Mets, now Texas) in 2021, and Ohtani this year. Santana, who was the best left-hander at the time, reached this record in 2004, recording 20 wins, 6 losses, and an average ERA of 2.61 in 34 games, running to the American League Cy Young Award.

DeGrom has memories of meeting this condition in 8 consecutive games in 2021. Ohtani could stand shoulder to shoulder with deGrom if he could record ‘three hits or less in five innings’ just once more against Boston on the 18th. And he might get a chance to make major league history again.

However, rain prevented Ohtani from attempting to record. In the game, which started after an hour delay due to rain, Ohtani allowed one point by giving up a walk and a wild throw in the first inning. But he didn’t get a hit. There were no hits even in the second inning, which started with a delay of about 20 minutes due to ground maintenance. He was two no-hit innings. The team was also leading 5-1. The 3rd win of the season and the record challenge seemed to continue.

However, during the Angels’ attack in the 3rd inning, the rain became stronger again. The referee had no choice but to declare a stoppage, and the game was delayed for about an hour. It was Ohtani who had already thrown the ball in the rain. It was impossible to keep his shoulders warm in an hour delay, let alone a 10 to 20 minute delay. In the end, Ohtani was replaced in the third inning ahead of Boston’s attack and finished the game. The opportunity to challenge the record was also blown away absurdly.

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