Sunday May 19, 2024

Japanese star Ohtani set to resume pitching tomorrow

September 01, 2018

LOS ANGELES: Japanese star Shohei Ohtani will return to the pitching mound on Sunday for the first time since an elbow injury that threatened to end his season, the Los Angeles Angels confirmed on Thursday.

Ohtani, who enjoyed a sensational start to his Major League Baseball career this year, has not pitched since June 6 after suffering strained ligaments in his right elbow. Initial reports said Ohtani’s injury may require Tommy John surgery, potentially sidelining him through the remainder of the season and the 2019 campaign.

However the two-way threat, dubbed "the Japanese Babe Ruth", has responded well to treatment and has been declared fit to face the Houston Astros this weekend. Ohtani came through a 50-pitch simulated game on Monday. His pitch count is likely to be restricted on Sunday as he eases back into the fray. Ohtani had dazzled from the mound before his injury, amassing 61 strikeouts over 49 1/3 innings for a 3.10 ERA. Angels manager Mike Scioscia warned fans that Ohtani might require time to rediscover his best form.