Future superstar for the Los Angeles Angels, Shohei Ohtani was born July 5, 1994 and is a Japanese pitcher and designated hitter. 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 102.5 mph.
Ohtani made the 25-man roster and started as the designated hitter on Opening Day against the Oakland Athletics. He singled in his first at-bat. On April 1, he made his pitching debut, striking out six batters in six innings but allowing three runs to pick up the win. On April 3, Ohtani hit his first career home run, a 397-foot three-run homer against Josh Tomlin. On the following day, he hit another one to become the first Angels player to homer in his first two career home games. He tied the franchise record of 12 total bases, and five RBI through his first three career games (both set by Bobby Clark in 1979). On April 6, he hit his third home run in three days, becoming the first Angels rookie to do so. In only his second start on the mound on April 8, Ohtani took a perfect game through 61⁄3 innings before allowing a hit. Overall, Ohtani pitched seven scoreless innings while striking out 12.
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