Los Angeles Angels’ Shohei Ohtani (29) is on fire with his bat.

Ohtani started in the No. 2 spot in the lineup against the Kansas City Royals at Kauffman Stadium in Kansas City, Missouri, on Monday (Aug. 18) and went 1-for-4 with a double, home run, two RBIs, one run scored and one walk. In the seventh inning, he took an 88.4-mile-per-hour changeup from reliever Taylor Clark over the center field wall. The home run, his 23rd of the season, hit 110 mph (177.0 km/h) and traveled 437 feet (133 meters).스포츠토토

A unanimous winner of the 2021 American League MVP award, Ohtani finished second in MVP voting last year behind Aaron Judge (Yankees), who set an American League home run record (62). This year, however, he’s cruising toward MVP honors as he looks to have his best season as a hitter.

[Photo] Shohei Ohtani of the Los Angeles Angels. ⓒGettyimages (All rights reserved)

In 71 games this season, Ohtani is batting .273 (82-for-173) with 23 home runs, 56 RBIs, and a 1011 OPS, and in 14 games (82 innings), he is 6-2 with a 3.29 ERA. While he hasn’t been able to build on his early season success as a pitcher, he’s been dominant as a hitter.

After leading the American League in home runs while his main rival, Judge (19), was injured, Ohtani hit his 23rd home run of the season to move past Pete Alonso (Mets, 22) into the bi-national home run lead. He also leads the majors in home runs, is tied for first in RBIs, first in OPS and first in slugging percentage (.626).

According to MLB.com, the official site of Major League Baseball, “Ohtani, who is having a hot month at the plate, traveled to Kansas City. Ohtani hit his 23rd home run of the season, extending his hitting streak to 14 games. This is his longest hitting streak since his major league debut. During that stretch, he had six multi-hit games.”

[Photo] Shohei Ohtani of the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim. ⓒGettyimages (All rights reserved)

Ohtani, who has hit safely in every game of a 14-game hitting streak that began on April 4 against Houston, is batting 4-for-6 with 24 doubles (52 at-bats), eight home runs, 18 RBIs and a 1.638 OPS in that span. According to MLB.com, “Ohtani is on pace to hit a career-high 51 homers if he plays in all 89 remaining games. He’s also on pace to reach 150 career homers in the fastest amount of games (637) for an Angels player.”

Teammate Mike Trout added, “Ohtani is an unbelievable player. Every time he steps up to the plate, there’s a chance he’s going to hit the ball out of the park.” Starting pitcher Mike Mayers, who played for the Angels from 2020 to 2022 and faced Ohtani as an opponent in the game, said, “I’ve been able to watch him hit from a pretty good spot the last three years. He’s unbelievable. He’s a tremendous athlete, he runs really well, he’s really fast, especially for a pitcher,” said Mayers.

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