Shohei Ohtani to begin throwing program

Shohei Ohtani to begin throwing program
via MLB
Bryan Ke
25 days ago
Los Angeles Dodgers superstar Shohei Ohtani may start throwing again once he returns to the United States, as announced by team manager Dave Roberts on Monday.
Key points:
  • Speaking to reporters, Roberts clarified that while Ohtani’s primary role for the team right now is designated hitter (DH), he noted that “Once we get back to the States, he is going to start his throwing program, which he hasn’t started yet. We’ll see how that progression goes. If his arm is healthy enough, we’ll have that conversation in the field. I do know he’s not going to pitch this year.”
  • Ohtani, 29, is a two-way phenom who can effectively play as a DH and pitcher. Since he is still recovering from elbow surgery for a torn ulnar collateral ligament (UCL) sustained in August 2023, the Japanese-born MLB star is currently sticking to the DH role.
  • He is expected to return to pitching in 2025.
The details:
  • Roberts’ recent comment on Ohtani playing a position besides DH and pitcher came as a surprise, considering that the team manager had told reporters during the team’s spring training in Arizona that he wanted him to focus on batting.
  • At the time, Ohtani told the media that he brought his outfielder gloves with him during training in case the Dodgers needed him to play the position.
  • The Japanese baseball star previously experimented with playing as an outfielder in some games with the Los Angeles Angels in 2021, where he filled the role for a total of 8.1 innings and played in both left and right field.
  • The last time Ohtani regularly played in the field was when he was still with the Hokkaido Nippon-Ham Fighters in the Nippon Professional Baseball in 2014.
Catching up:
  • The Dodgers beat South Korea‘s Kiwoom Heroes 14-3 and Team Korea 5-2 in their exhibition games in Seoul on Sunday and Monday, respectively.
  • Ohtani went 0-for-3 as a DH against the Kiwoom Heroes on Sunday and struck out twice in two at-bats.
  • Looking ahead, the Dodgers are now preparing for their season opener against the San Diego Padres in a two-game series on Wednesday and Thursday, the first MLB game in South Korea. Ohtani’s friend, Yu Darvish, will be starting for the Padres, marking the first time the two will face each other in a regulation game.
 
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