The two highest-paid pitchers in Major League Baseball are about to go head-to-head.

Five months after parting ways, Shohei Ohtani of the Los Angeles Dodgers and Mike Trout of the Los Angeles Angels will meet as adversaries in an exhibition game. It’s 10:05 a.m. June 6 at Camelback Ranch in Glendale, Arizona. It’s the Dodgers’ home game.

Ohtani became a Dodger in free agency last December, signing a 10-year, $700 million contract. It was the highest contract in Major League Baseball history, surpassing Trout’s 12-year, $426.5 million deal. Trout became the first player in the majors to reach the $400 million mark when he signed a matching extension with the Angels in March 2019. He was surpassed by his teammate of six years, Ohtani.

Trout really wanted Ohtani to stay with the Angels, but it wasn’t in his control. Ohtani met with Angels owner Art Moreno shortly before signing with the Dodgers, but the terms fell far short of the Dodgers’ offer. While the exact amount of money was never disclosed, local media reports at the time suggested that Moreno had no intention of keeping Ohtani.

Since Ohtani joined the Angels in 2018, the two have played together for six seasons. They dominated the major leagues as one of the most potent duos in baseball, especially in 2021, when Ohtani began to switch to hitting full-time. They have homered together in 30 games in their careers. In those games, the Angels went 21-9. Last year, they combined to go 7-1 in eight games.

It’s not every day you see two players in the same uniform hitting back-to-back home runs.

Ohtani didn’t get to say goodbye to Trout last year, as his season ended prematurely. Ohtani suffered an elbow injury in early August that ended his season as a pitcher on Aug. 24 against the Cincinnati Reds, and in September, he suffered a strained oblique muscle that also ended his season as a hitter. He underwent a Tommy John surgery on Sept. 20 and began a rehab assignment. Ohtani effectively said goodbye to the Angels when he packed up his things in the locker room shortly before the season ended.

Trout’s situation was similar. After suffering a fractured metacarpal bone in his right hand in early July and being sidelined for nearly two months, Trout returned on August 23 against Cincinnati, but the injury flared up and he was lost for the season.

The two players met in a two-hitter in the World Baseball Classic final last March. Ohtani came on to close out the top of the ninth inning with Japan leading 3-2. After walking leadoff hitter Jeff McNeil, Ohtani induced Mookie Betts to ground out to second base for a double play. The next batter he faced was Trout.

After a low 88.3 mph sweeper on the first pitch, followed by a 100 mph fastball, Trout kept a poker face. The third pitch, a 99.8 mph fastball, was a ball, and Trout swung again at a fastball of the same speed. Five pitches later, on a 2B2S count, Ohtani fired his fastest pitch of the day, a 101.6-mph fastball outside, but it sailed off the catcher’s mitt.

Ohtani’s sixth pitch was a sweeper. It was 87.2 miles outside the strike zone, and Trout’s bat cracked the air. Ohtani raised his arms and roared, and Trout stomped to the dugout with his head down. The greatest two-hit matchup of all time may never be repeated.

In Game 6, both players will bat. The Dodgers are on five days’ rest. The Angels host the Texas Rangers on the fifth, and after playing back-to-back days on days three and four, Trout will likely stay home to rest. The Dodgers game on the sixth is also on the road, but Trout is likely to play.

Ohtani is in much better shape at the start of the exhibition 사설토토 games.

Ohtani went 3-for-3 with a home run, two RBIs and two runs scored in the No. 2 spot in the lineup in a home exhibition game against the Colorado Rockies on April 4. In three games, he is batting .714 (5-for-7) with one home run, five RBIs, three runs scored, two walks, a .778 slugging percentage, a 1.529 on-base percentage and a 2.207 OPS. He struck out in nine plate appearances and extended his hitting streak to seven games, dating back to his fifth-inning homer to left-center field against the Chicago White Sox on March 28, when he hit a two-run shot to left-center field in his third at-bat of the day. It’s a fine, explosive hit.

Trout, on the other hand, went 0-for-3 with a walk and three strikeouts in his three at-bats in center field against the Cubs. In seven games of exhibition play, he is batting .125 (2-for-16) with one home run, one RBI, one run scored, and a .355 OPS. However, Trout seemed to be finding his groove, hitting a double against the Cleveland Indians on April 1 and a single against the Arizona Diamondbacks on April 3.

While the first real batting matchup between the $1.265 billion ($1.501 trillion) combined price tag may not be as exciting as the WBC, it’s still intriguing in its own right.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *