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Shohei Ohtani Adds to Ruthian Legend With Singular Back-to-Back Feat

Sports Illustrated logo Sports Illustrated 6/23/2022 Thomas Neumann
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The Angels star added to his legacy with an achievement that has never been accomplished.

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Angels phenom Shohei Ohtani frequently draws comparisons to baseball legend Babe Ruth for his unparalleled ability at the plate and on the mound.

But even Ruth, over the course of his entire historic career, never accomplished what Ohtani has achieved in the past two nights. In fact, no other player in MLB history has recorded such a pair of performances.

Ohtani struck out 13 batters in a 5–0 win over the Royals on Wednesday night, establishing a career-high in his 47th MLB start. He allowed just two hits in eight innings of work while retiring 23 of the last 24 hitters he faced.


Video: Shohei Ohtani Becomes First MLB Player to Accomplish Two-Way Feat (Sports Illustrated)

That performance came one day after Ohtani went ballistic at the plate, hitting a pair of three-run homers and tallying a career-high eight RBIs in an extra-inning loss to Kansas City. Ohtani becomes the first player in MLB history to record a 13-strikeout game as a pitcher and an eight-RBI game as a hitter, according to ESPN Stats & Info.

Ohtani, the 2021 AL MVP, boasts 15 home runs and 45 RBIs as a hitter to go with a 6–4 record, 2.90 ERA and 90 strikeouts as a pitcher this season.

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Those are numbers that might even make Ruth blush if he were still around to see them.

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