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Angels sign versatile Japanese star Shohei Ohtani

Shohei Ohtani 2013 photo By Ship1231 - Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0, https commons.wikimedia.org

The Angels recently released the following statement regarding Shohei Ohtani:

“We are honored Shohei Ohtani has decided to join the Angels Organization. We felt a unique connectivity with him throughout the process and are excited he will become an Angel. This is a special time for Angels fans, the Ohtani family, and Nez Balelo and the team at Creative Artists Agency.”

 

Shohei Ohtani (大谷 翔平 Ōtani Shōhei, born July 5, 1994) is a Japanese professional baseball pitcher and outfielder for the Los Angeles Angels of Major League Baseball (MLB). He previously played for the Hokkaido Nippon-Ham Fighters of Nippon Professional Baseball‘s (NPB) Pacific League. Ohtani was the first pick of the Fighters in the 2012 draft. He has officially recorded the fastest pitch by a Japanese pitcher and in NPB history at 165 kilometres per hour (102.5 mph).

In 2017, he played in 65 games, hitting .332 with 8 homers and 31 RBIs while going 3-2, 3.20 with 29 strikeouts on the mound. In September, it was revealed that Ohtani would ask to be posted at the end of the season in order to play in Major League Baseball in 2018. However, before that could happen, he had surgery on his right ankle in early October. The injury had originally occurred in the 2016 Japan Series, and had cost him a chance to play in the 2017 World Baseball Classic in addition to restricting his playing time during the season. There was a question as to whether or not NPB and MLB could come to a posting agreement. Both sides did come to an agreement on November 21, 2017.

On December 8, 2017, Ohtani signed with the Los Angeles Angels. The deal was finalized the next day. On December 13, it was revealed that Ohtani was diagnosed with a first-degree UCL sprain in his right elbow. He received a platelet-rich plasma injection to treat the pain.

 

PORTIONS OF ARTICLE WRITTEN BY LA ANGELS MEDIA RELATIONS; COURTESY MLBpressbox.com

PLAYER INFORMATION WRITTEN BY & COURTESY OF WIKIPEDIA COMMONS