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Shohei Ohtani’s first start will be Sunday

Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim v San Diego Padres

PEORIA, AZ - FEBRUARY 26: Shohei Ohtani #17 of the Los Angeles Angels in the dugout during the spring training game against the San Diego Padres at Peoria Stadium on February 26, 2018 in Peoria, Arizona. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)

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The Angels selected the contract of pitcher/DH Shohei Ohtani and added him to the 40-man and 25-man roster. To create a 40-man spot, they designated catcher Carlos Perez for assignment.

That may not be super shocking news, but Ohtani has struggled mightily this spring, neither hitting nor pitching well, and at least some people have suggested giving him some time in the minors. That always seemed extraordinarily unlikely given the attention that has been focused on the two-way star, both in terms of media coverage and, likely, in ticket sales and marketing. He was always going to be given the opportunity to fail at the big league level before seeing time at Salt Lake City. It’s certainly the call most of us would make if we ran the club.

Ohtani is scheduled to make his major league pitching debut Sunday when he starts for the Los Angeles Angels in their fourth game of the season at Oakland. He is likewise expected to be the team’s designated hitter in at least one of the first three games, but it’s unclear if that will happen in the opener tomorrow.

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