Ohtani-san has done it! For the first time in major league history, a Japanese-born player hits for the cycle after 326 cycles in Major League Baseball history.
Not even Japanese legend Ichiro Suzuki accomplished hitting a cycle in his illustrious career in the majors. Here’s how Ohtani did it:
- In the first inning, Ohtani hit a home run off of Ryan Yarbrough bringing home Mike Trout and Tommy LaStella giving the Angels a 3-0 lead.
- Ohtani doubled off of Yarbrough in the third inning.
- In the fifth inning, Ohtani tripled off of Yarbrough and later scored on Albert Pujols’ two-run home run that gave the Halos a 5-0 lead.
- Finally, in the seventh inning, Ohtani singled off of reliever Hunter Wood with two outs bringing Tommy LaStella over to third.
Shohei is the first Angel to hit for the cycle since 2013 when Mike Trout did it against the Seattle Mariners at home. “It’s tough; I needed a homer, and he needed a single,” Trout said with a chuckle. “He got the three hardest ones out of the way, and then obviously got that single. [I’m] just happy for him. He was excited, I was excited.”
He’s also the sixth player to hit for the cycle as a designated hitter in MLB history. To add to that, he’s the first designated hitter to hit for the cycle since Jeff DaVanon (another former Angel) hit one on August 25, 2014.
Even first-year Halos manager never realized how good Ohtani could be, “If you go back to Spring Training 2018 when he arrived, I knew that the power was there, that he had as much power as pretty much any hitter I’d seen. The consistent hitting, I wasn’t sure about. I thought he’d hit, but I didn’t think he’d hit like this.”
But Ohtani is a team player and wasn’t even thinking about the cycle when he came up to bat.
He was focused on winning the ball game, “I wasn’t necessarily trying to hit a single,” Ohtani said. “I was just trying to get on base, whether it was a base on balls or any other way because it was still a close game.”
The 2018 AL Rookie of the Year not only did something special but he is something special. Since coming back from the disabled list, he has been hitting with a hot bat. His slash line over his past five games is .529/.556/1.294 with two doubles, a triple, three homers, and six RBIs. And once Andrelton Simmons and Justin Upton come back, the Angels lineup will be that much more potent.
Who knows? Maybe Ohtani might have another cycle up his sleeve by then.
Cycles in Angels History
Player: Date: Opponent: Location:
Shohei Ohtani June 13, 2019 Tampa Bay Rays Tropicana Field, Tampa Bay
Mike Trout May 21, 2013 Seattle Mariners Angel Stadium, Anaheim
Chone Figgins Sept. 6, 2006 Texas Rangers Ameriquest Field, Arlington
Jeff Davanon Aug. 25, 2004 Kansas City Royals Edison Int’l Stadium, Anaheim
Dave Winfield June 24, 1991 Kansas City Royals Royals Stadium
Dan Ford Aug. 10, 1979 Seattle Mariners Anaheim Stadium
Jim Fregosi May 20, 1968 Boston Red Sox Anaheim Stadium
Jim Fregosi July 28, 1964 New York Yankees Chavez Ravine
Featured Image: New York Post