ANAHEIM, Calif. — Shohei Ohtani took the mound on Wednesday night for Game 2 of the Freeway Series between the Los Angeles Angels and Los Angeles Dodgers. Ohtani was brilliant, allowing just five hits and one earned run in seven innings of work, but was handed the loss as the Angels failed to score. Ohtani also finished with 12 strikeouts on the mound, which pulled him within 10 of Blue Jays starter Kevin Gausman for the American League lead in that category.
Speaking with reporters after the game, Ohtani was asked about how good he felt on the mound, and said, “I definitely felt way better this time than last time. I felt the most comfortable on the mound so far this year.”
When asked if there is something specific he found mechanically that helped him thrive on the mound in this outing, Ohtani said, “I felt really good from the bullpen today, and I feel like I was able to transition that to the game… I felt really good today, so I just need to continue that going forward.”
While Ohtani was dominant on the mound, he went hitless at the plate, which is something he also spoke about after the game.
“Today I had bad results at the plate, but I need to forget about that and move on to the mound,” Ohtani said when asked about the difficulty of hitting and pitching on the same day. “The mental part is the harder part than the physical part.”
The Angels are of course dealing with injuries to multiple key players, which places even more responsibility on Ohtani offensively. When asked about this after the game, Ohtani said, “The guys that are playing are trying to their best to score runs. Especially guys in the middle of the lineup like myself, if we can’t come through it’s gonna be hard to win ball games.”
The Angels were swept by the Dodgers in this two-game set, and will now head Colorado for three games with the last place Rockies.