OAKLAND — It took until the final game of the regular season, but Shohei Ohtani made history yet again, becoming the first player in the World Series era to qualify for the leaderboards as both a hitter and a pitcher in the same year.
With a perfect first inning in an eventual 3-2 loss to the Athletics on Wednesday, Ohtani reached the necessary 162 innings to qualify among the league leaders for pitchers.
He already passed the 502-plate appearance mark to qualify as a hitter, as he singled in the first inning in his 663rd plate appearance of the year.
Ohtani led the Angels in both innings pitched and starts as a pitcher as well as games played and plate appearances as a hitter, marking yet another historic season for the two-way superstar.
“Normally, I don’t really worry about those types of numbers but I was getting close to it and wanted to see what it feels like to get the minimum number of at-bats and innings pitched,” Ohtani said.
“I think I learned a lot from that.”
Ohtani went five innings in his 28th and final start of the season, allowing one run on one hit and one walk with six strikeouts before coming out of the game due to a blister.
He took a perfect game into the fifth inning — a start after taking a no-hitter in the seventh inning against Oakland — but walked Stephen Vogt with one out before giving up a double to Chad Pinder. After allowing a run on a sacrifice fly to Conner Capel, Ohtani was visited at the mound by head athletic trainer Mike Frostad.