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January 2020
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Angels versatile Shohei Ohtani named newest American League Player of the Week


Shohei Ohtani (courtesy


Starting pitcher/designated hitter Shohei Ohtani of the Los Angeles Angels has been named the American League Player of the Week presented by W.B. Mason for the period ending April 8th.

Shortstop Didi Gregorius (.462, 4 R, 3 HR, 7 RBI) also posted an impressive week for the New York Yankees. On Tuesday, the Netherlands native went 4-for-4 with a double, two home runs and eight RBI to propel the Yankees to a 11-4 win over the Tampa Bay Rays. With his third home run of the season on Friday against the Baltimore Orioles, Gregorius notched his ninth extra-base hit on the season. The 28-year-old became the eighth Yankee since 1908 to tally at least nine extra-base hits through the Club’s first nine games of a season. Other noteworthy performances last week included starting pitcher Charlie Morton (2-0, 0.00 ERA, 12.0 IP, 13 SO) and outfielder Josh Reddick (.474, 6 R, 3 HR, 7 RBI) of the Houston Astros, as well as third baseman Matt Chapman (.423, 8 R, 11 H, 2 HR) of the Athletics.

In recognition of his American League Player of the Week Award, Shohei Ohtani will be awarded a watch courtesy of Rockwell.

In three games as designated hitter for the Angels, Ohtani slashed .462/.500/1.154 with four runs scored, six hits, three home runs and seven RBI. In his lone start of the week yesterday afternoon, the rookie sensation collected his second career win, tossing 7.0 shutout innings of one-hit ball with 12 strikeouts and just one walk. Shohei is the first two-way player to earn Player of the Week honors since the Award was introduced in the AL in 1975 and the NL in 1973. Among his AL counterparts, Ohtani finished his historic week first in slugging percentage and tied for first in home runs, while also finishing tied for first in ERA and tied for fourth in strikeouts. This is the Angels’ first weekly award since Shohei’s teammate Matt Shoemaker claimed weekly honors for the period ending July 17, 2016.

In his first career start at Angel Stadium, Ohtani turned in one of the best pitching performances of the season thus far, taking a perfect game into the seventh inning against the Oakland Athletics. Registering 12 punchouts in yesterday’s 6-1 victory, the 23-year-old generated 24 swings and misses, the highest total by a Major League hurler this season. In addition, the Japan native became just the third pitcher in AL history to record at least 12 strikeouts in one of the first two starts of his career, joining Hall of Famer Juan Marichal (1960) and Steve Woodard (1997). Ohtani also became the second pitcher in Club history to record 12 strikeouts, one walk and yield just one hit in a single outing, joining Hall of Famer Nolan Ryan (1972). Earlier this week, the left-handed-hitting slugger connected for a home run in three consecutive contests, while also logging a pair of multi-hit games. htani is just the third player in MLB history to log a pair of wins as a pitcher and record three round-trippers in his team’s first 10 games of a season, and the first since Jim Shaw in 1919. Moreover, Shohei became the third player in history to homer in three straight games and post more than 10 strikeouts in a single outing during the same season, a feat he accomplished in just one week. Hall of Famer Babe Ruth (1916) and Ken Brett (1973) previously accomplished the feat.