Angels star Shohei Ohtani achieves feat not seen since Babe Ruth 100 years ago

ARLINGTON, Texas -- Shohei Ohtani struck out nine after a shaky first inning on the mound, and also scored three runs and drove in two in a start like none since Babe Ruth 100 years earlier, as Los Angeles beat Texas 9-4.

A day after hitting his seventh homer to tie for the major league lead, Ohtani (1-0) became the first home run leader to be the starting pitcher for a game since Ruth for the New York Yankees against Detroit on June 13, 1921. It was the second time this season Ohtani pitched and batted second.

The Japanese right-hander gave up four runs in the first inning before retiring 14 of the last 15 batters he faced, with all his strikeouts coming during that span.

RELATED: Angels welcome fans back to stands for 2021 season
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The Angels will open the 2021 season Thursday night, facing the Chicago White Sox with fans at Angel Stadium for the first time since Sept. 29, 2019.

Ohtani walked and scored in the first, then threw 28 pitches in the bottom of the inning, including four walks, a hit batsman and a wild pitch. But the game was tied at 4 in the second after Ohtani hit a two-run double and scored on Mike Trout's single.

Justin Upton and Albert Pujols put the Angels ahead to stay with back-to-back homers to begin the third off starter Jordan Lyles (1-2), who allowed seven runs and 10 hits in 2 2/3 innings. José Iglesias later went deep off Hyeon-Jong Yang, the lefty from South Korea making his big league debut.
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With Angels tickets set to go on sale this week ahead of a reopening of Angel Stadium of Anaheim, fans can barely contain their excitement about seeing games in person again.

Trout also had an RBI double among his four hits in his return to the lineup to raise his average to .426. He missed three games last weekend in Houston because of a bruised left elbow after getting hit by a pitch.

Texas went ahead on Nate Lowe's sixth homer, a three-run shot that gave him an MLB best-matching 21 RBIs.

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