The anticipated Shohei Ohtani vs. Kevin Gausman matchup just became a lot more juicy.
Ohtani isn't just pitching for the Los Angeles Angels against the Giants, the two-way superstar also is hitting for himself, batting second in Wednesday's lineup. Ohtani also will be making history at an AL ballpark.
Jeff Fletcher of the Orange County Register reported this is the first time ever an NL team will have a DH while an AL team doesn't.
Ohtani has been one of the best power hitters in baseball this season, making himself a legitimate AL MVP candidate. Through 68 games, he is tied for the major league lead with 23 home runs. He's batting .269 with a .640 slugging percentage, .996 OPS and has even stole 10 bases.
The batter's box of course isn't the only area Ohtani thrives. Ohtani also has been one of the nastiest pitchers in baseball. The 26-year-old is 3-1 with a 2.70 ERA in 10 starts this season. He already has 73 strikeouts in 53 1/3 innings, which is good for 12.3 strikeouts per nine innings.
Opponents are batting only .180 against Ohtani this year.
Gausman has been even better on the bump, though. The Giants' ace is 8-1 with a 1.51 ERA in 14 starts. He also has a 262 ERA+, 2.37 FIP and 0.770 WHIP. Opponents are batting .157 off him.
Ohtani went 0-for-3 with three strikeouts Tuesday in the Giants' 5-0 win over the Angels. One day later, Gausman will look to silence the Angels' star as his counterpart looks to dominate on the rubber and at the plate.