ARLINGTON, Texas (AP) — Shohei Ohtani homered twice on a huge night at the plate after getting bad news about his pitching arm, and the Los Angeles Angels beat the Texas Rangers 9-3 on Wednesday.
Perhaps headed for Tommy John surgery, the two-way rookie sensation went 4 for 4 with three RBIs, four runs and a stolen base to power the Angels. About two hours before the game, the team announced Ohtani has new damage in his right elbow and ligament-replacement surgery has been recommended.
The club said the Japanese star had an MRI earlier in the day that revealed the problem in his ulnar collateral ligament.
“There’s more questions out there right now than answers. We’ll take it one step at a time,” manager Mike Scioscia said. “There’s a lot of consulting that Shohei will do with doctors and just see what the best course of action is, and we’ll see where we are.”
Ohtani’s homers were both towering drives into the right-field seats. With his second two-homer game, the designated hitter tied Kenji Johjima’s 2006 major league record of 18 homers in a season by a Japanese rookie.
Andrelton Simmons also homered for the Angels and drove in three runs.
Adrian Beltre hit a two-run shot for Texas, the 472nd homer of his career, in the sixth inning against Jim Johnson. Three of Beltre’s 10 homers this season have come in the last five games.
Los Angeles rookie Jaime Barria (10-8) beat Texas for the third time and 45-year-old Bartolo Colon (7-12) for the second. Barria has not beaten any other team more than once but has a 0.86 ERA against the Rangers in 21 innings over four starts.
Barria allowed two hits and three walks while striking out five in five innings.
Los Angeles scored two batters into the game. Kole Calhoun singled and ran home on David Fletcher’s double into the left-field corner. With two outs, Taylor Ward singled in Fletcher for a 2-0 lead.
Simmons hit a two-run shot off the left-field foul pole in the third inning. Ohtani beat out an infield hit that withstood a video review, then scored on Simmons’ 10th homer.
Angels: If not for the injury announcement about Ohtani, it would have been bigger news that CF Mike Trout wasn’t in the lineup a night after being hit on his right leg by a pitch. “His calf is tight,” Scioscia said. “I don’t think we need to push it tonight. We’ll give him (Wednesday) and (Thursday) to recover, and he’ll be ready to play.”
Rangers: OF Willie Calhoun was not available because of what manager Jeff Banister called “a little bit of a chest cold.”
Angels: Resume their road trip Friday in Chicago. RHP Felix Pena (1-4, 4.19 ERA) will pitch for Los Angeles, and LHP Carlos Rodon (6-4, 2.89) for the White Sox.
Rangers: Play on Friday at Oakland, with RHP Yovani Gallardo (8-3, 5.97 ERA) opposing RHP Chris Bassitt (2-3, 3.19) of the A’s. Sixteen of Texas’ final 22 games will be on the road.