Update (6:17 PM ET): Ohtani got Matt Joyce to line out for the first out of the seventh inning, but Marcus Semien broke up the perfect game with a well-struck single to left field.
Ohtani exited after seven innings. He kept the Athletics off the board, yielding just one hit and one walk with 12 strikeouts on 91 pitches.
Shohei Ohtani got off to a hot start in Sunday afternoon’s game against the Athletics, striking out the first three batters he faced in his home pitching debut. He’s kept rolling since then, mowing down Athletic after Athletic. He’s perfect through six innings.
Ohtani has tossed 75 pitches, recording 11 strikeouts in his six frames. He has induced 22 swinging strikes from the Athletics. That’s an absurd 29.3 percent whiff rate on pitches.
The Angels scored twice in the bottom of the first, once in the third (on a Mike Trout homer), and twice more in the fourth to give Ohtani a 5-0 lead to work with. Ryan Schimpf tacked on a solo homer in the sixth to make it 6-0.
We’ll keep you updated as Ohtani attempts to stay perfect over the final three innings.
The Nationals, believed by oddsmakers to be big underdogs in the World Series against the Astros, won arguably their toughest matchup last night by plating five runs against Gerrit Cole in a 5-4 win in Houston. They’ll take a 1-0 series lead into Wednesday night’s action featuring a duel between Stephen Strasburg and Justin Verlander. Here are the lineups for the two sides.
SS Trea Turner
RF Adam Eaton
3B Anthony Rendon
LF Juan Soto
DH Howie Kendrick
2B Asdrúbal Cabrera
1B Ryan Zimmerman
C Kurt Suzuki
CF Victor Robles
SP Stephen Strasburg
No changes here. Manager Dave Martinez is rolling out the same exact lineup as he had in Game 1.
CF George Springer
2B José Altuve
LF Michael Brantley
3B Alex Bregman
1B Yuli Gurriel
DH Yordan Álvarez
SS Carlos Correa
C Robinson Chirinos
RF Josh Reddick
SP Justin Verlander
Likewise, Astros skipper A.J. Hinch has hardly changed his lineup. The only difference is Chirinos is doing the catching tonight as opposed to Martín Maldonado.
Springer notably did not give maximum effort on an RBI double he hit off of the wall in right-center field, thinking it was a home run. He could’ve had a triple. Springer and Hinch discussed it over the phone late last night, Bleacher Report’s Scott Miller reports. Hinch didn’t seem too concerned about it.