The Los Angeles Angels got a series-opening win over the Arizona Diamondbacks in what was a fairly ridiculous game. Friday night’s win had a little bit of everything including two blown leads, two balk calls, the three-batter rule being called into action, and Shohei Ohtani and Kurt Suzuki each going down after being hit by pitches.
Ohtani fell to the ground in pain after fouling a ball off the inside of his right knee while Suzuki took a pitch directly in the hamstring. This came after a Diamondbacks pitcher was forced to return to the mound due to not facing the minimum three batters required.
Both looked very serious in the moment, and Suzuki was forced to exit the game. However, Ohtani stayed in and looked relatively good for another three innings on the mound and two more plate appearances.
Suzuki — whose injury looked more severe — is expected to be fine after experiencing numbness in his hamstring, according to Jeff Fletcher of The O.C. Register:
So umpires made Buchter return to the mound, and he then hit Kurt Suzuki to load the bases. It knocked Suzuki out of the game, and pitcher Griffin Canning had to run for him because the Angels were out of position players. Suzuki said the ball hit him in the hamstring and caused his leg to go numb, but he said he’ll be fine.
Ohtani, meanwhile, said the knee was fine in the moment but stiffened up after the game. Like Suzuki, he’s not concerned about missing any time.
“It’s pretty stiff right now, but during the game I don’t think it affected my game too much,” Ohtani said.
Ohtani and Suzuki should have plenty of time to rest and recover, as neither are projected to play the rest of the series. Given that it’s a National League ballpark, Ohtani will not be able to serve as a designated hitter, likely knocking him out on Saturday and Sunday. Suzuki generally plays every few days, meaning it should be Max Stassi behind the plate in the last two games of the series.
Hopefully, both will be ready to go by the time the Angels head to Northern California to face the Oakland Athletics in a three-game set from Monday-Wednesday. That’s the next time either of them would play again regardless, so as far as freak incidents go, it was pretty good timing.
Ohtani shines in outing vs. Diamondbacks
Ohtani took a foul ball to the knee in the third inning. However, he pitched three more innings, getting out of two second-and-third-base jams in the process. He also hit two more doubles and scored two more runs offensively, which is why there is minimal concern over an injury.
The Angels two-way star put together an incredible game that helped the team secure their fourth consecutive victory and 12th in their last 17 games.