The Athletics (79-67) will get a little relief this weekend as they head to Anaheim. Los Angeles Angels manager Joe Maddon said two-way player Shohei Ohtani would not pitch in the three-game series. Ohtani is dealing with some soreness in his throwing arm.
That’s bad news for the baseball world, who has become enamored with the phenom who can perform at an MVP level on both sides of the ball, but should be a break for the A’s.
Ohtani has limited A’s bats to just a .154 average and six hits in 47 batters faced this season.
Oakland needs as much success in these next few series as possible. Their chances of making the postseason increased with these last two wins over the Kansas City Royals, but they're still looking up at multiple teams in the AL Wild Card race.
Cole Irvin will get the start for the A’s on Friday with the Angels starter still to be determined.
On Saturday, Daulton Jefferies is scheduled to start on the mound with James Kaprielian looking to try out a bullpen role after facing some setbacks in his recent starts.
The AL Wild Card standings have the Toronto Blue Jays (82-64) and Boston Red Sox (83-65) leading the way, half a game ahead of the New York Yankees (82-65) and three games ahead of the A’s.
Maddon added the soreness for Ohtani is nothing significant, just build-up from a long year, and there are no plans to see a doctor. Ohtani could be shut down for the season from the mound.