Los Angeles Angels SP/DH Shohei Ohtani achieved an unusual feat on Sunday night as he became the only MLB player to hit 15 home runs in a season while also pitching 50 innings since baseball legend Babe Ruth in 1919.
While this is a very select club for MLB players, the Negro Leagues Museum Twitter account pointed out there are several Negro Leagues Hall-of-Famers who have also accomplished this feat.
Something we haven’t seen done in MLB. Hall of Famers Bullet Rogan, Martin Dihigo, Leon Day and Hilton Smith would beg to differ!
— negroleaguesmuseum (@nlbmprez) September 3, 2018
Ohtani’s start on Sunday came somewhat as a surprise as he had been sidelined from the mound since June 6 due to an elbow injury and there had been speculation about the possibility of Tommy John surgery for the young star.
The Japanese rookie allowed two runs in 2.1 IP and was limited to 49 pitches during his return to the hill in the Angels’ 4-2 loss to the Houston Astros. Ohtani was pulled from the game after a noticeable drop in the velocity of his deliveries, which is a worrisome development in regard to the health and durability of his pitching elbow.
Hopefully Ohtani will get the rest and treatment he needs to be able to get back to full health soon, as I believe he will be important to the future success of Major League Baseball since he is a unique talent who has attracted a lot of interest from fans all over the world.
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