Shohei Ohtani gets mixed results in spring training debut with Angels

first_img Angels win on walk-off in Shohei Ohtani’s spring training debut Angels’ Luis Valbuena looks for good start after strong finish in 2017 In one of the most eagerly anticipated spring training games in Angels history, Ohtani faced the Milwaukee Brewers in front of a Tempe Diablo Stadium crowd of 6,019 and television audiences on both sides of the Pacific. The Angels estimated that about 100 media members were there to chronicle the performance.They saw a pitcher who clearly has tremendous talent, with a fastball topping out at 97 mph in this outing. They also saw a pitcher who clearly is far from a finished product.Both of which were exactly what the Angels expected.“I think that he did enough to where we certainly learned some things,” Manager Mike Scioscia said. “He and Martin worked some things out. I think it’ll be a step forward for him next time. He threw all his pitches. Some were what we expect him to be, and some he just lost his release point on. It’s a step forward for sure.”Ohtani faced seven batters and got four outs, with two strikeouts. Ohtani gave up an unearned run in the first inning, which began with a leadoff double by Jonathan Villar. Villar got ahead 3-and-1 and then blasted the ball over the head of center fielder Eric Young Jr. Will Shohei Ohtani’s success in Japan continue with Angels? Former teammates, Japanese baseball officials think so Broxton added: “He’s got great stuff. He has the ability to be a major league baseball player, for sure. I only saw fastballs, but from the breaking balls I saw earlier, it looked pretty good. In spring training, it’s hard to get a good judge on how the guy is feeling or if all of his stuff is locked in. There’s definitely more there. He’s going to improve.”Ohtani’s next start is not set yet, but it will likely be either Friday or Saturday. Before then, he is going to make his debut as a hitter. Scioscia wouldn’t say when that would be, beyond “early next week.”Whenever that happens, Ohtani said he’s eager to take his next step.“I had a lot of fun out there today,” he said. “I am excited to hit and pitch again. I want to keep getting better.”RAMIREZ UPDATEJC Ramirez threw 25 pitches in two innings worth of live batting practice, his second such session of the spring.“Everything is good,” Ramirez said. “Everything feels normal. I’m ready to go. I can’t wait to pitch in a game.”Ramirez said he’s scheduled to start against the San Francisco Giants on Thursday. Ramirez is coming back from stem-cell therapy to repair a damaged ulnar collateral ligament suffered last August.The Angels have Ramirez on their depth chart as a starter, but he could also be used out of the bullpen if he doesn’t make the rotation. He is out of options, so he’ll either be in the majors or on the disabled list. Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Error Shohei Ohtani: Who is the Angels’ new guy? PreviousThe Angels’ Shohei Ohtani heads to the outfield after his Cactus League debut against the Milwaukee Brewers at Tempe Diablo Stadium in Tempe on Saturday, Feb. 24, 2018. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan/Orange County Register/SCNG)The Angels’ Shohei Ohtani in the dugout after his Cactus League debut against the Milwaukee Brewers at Tempe Diablo Stadium in Tempe on Saturday, Feb. 24, 2018. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan/Orange County Register/SCNG)The Angels’ Shohei Ohtani throws to the plate during his Cactus League debut against the Milwaukee Brewers at Tempe Diablo Stadium in Tempe on Saturday, Feb. 24, 2018. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan/Orange County Register/SCNG) SoundThe gallery will resume insecondsThe Angels’ Shohei Ohtani throws to the plate during his Cactus League debut against the Milwaukee Brewers at Tempe Diablo Stadium in Tempe on Saturday, Feb. 24, 2018. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan/Orange County Register/SCNG)The Angels’ Shohei Ohtani throws to the plate during his Cactus League debut against the Milwaukee Brewers at Tempe Diablo Stadium in Tempe on Saturday, Feb. 24, 2018. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan/Orange County Register/SCNG)The Angels’ Shohei Ohtani makes his Cactus League debut against the Milwaukee Brewers at Tempe Diablo Stadium in Tempe on Saturday, Feb. 24, 2018. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan/Orange County Register/SCNG)The Angels’ Shohei Ohtani makes his Cactus League debut against the Milwaukee Brewers at Tempe Diablo Stadium in Tempe on Saturday, Feb. 24, 2018. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan/Orange County Register/SCNG)The Angels’ Shohei Ohtani makes his Cactus League debut against the Milwaukee Brewers at Tempe Diablo Stadium in Tempe on Saturday, Feb. 24, 2018. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan/Orange County Register/SCNG)The Angels’ Shohei Ohtani before is greeted by teammates before his Cactus League debut against the Milwaukee Brewers at Tempe Diablo Stadium in Tempe on Saturday, Feb. 24, 2018. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan/Orange County Register/SCNG)The Angels’ Shohei Ohtani looks to the outfield during his Cactus League debut against the Milwaukee Brewers on Saturday at Tempe Diablo Stadium in Tempe, Ariz. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan/Orange County Register/SCNG)The Angels’ Shohei Ohtani, with a runner at third in the first inning, during his Cactus League debut against the Milwaukee Brewers at Tempe Diablo Stadium in Tempe on Saturday, Feb. 24, 2018. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan/Orange County Register/SCNG)The Angels’ Shohei Ohtani watches Jonathan Villar’s ground rule double during the first inning of his Cactus League debut against the Milwaukee Brewers at Tempe Diablo Stadium in Tempe on Saturday, Feb. 24, 2018. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan/Orange County Register/SCNG)The Angels’ Shohei Ohtani checks the runner during his Cactus League debut against the Milwaukee Brewers at Tempe Diablo Stadium in Tempe on Saturday, Feb. 24, 2018. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan/Orange County Register/SCNG)The Angels’ Shohei Ohtani makes his Cactus League debut against the Milwaukee Brewers at Tempe Diablo Stadium in Tempe on Saturday, Feb. 24, 2018. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan/Orange County Register/SCNG)The Angels’ Shohei Ohtani listens to the National Anthem with his teammates before his Cactus League debut against the Milwaukee Brewers at Tempe Diablo Stadium in Tempe on Saturday, Feb. 24, 2018. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan/Orange County Register/SCNG)The Angels’ Shohei Ohtani backs up a throw during his Cactus League debut against the Milwaukee Brewers at Tempe Diablo Stadium in Tempe on Saturday, Feb. 24, 2018. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan/Orange County Register/SCNG)The Angels’ Shohei Ohtani throws to the plate during his Cactus League debut against the Milwaukee Brewers at Tempe Diablo Stadium in Tempe on Saturday, Feb. 24, 2018. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan/Orange County Register/SCNG)The Angels’ Shohei Ohtani is welcomed into the dugout after the first inning during his Cactus League debut against the Milwaukee Brewers at Tempe Diablo Stadium in Tempe on Saturday, Feb. 24, 2018. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan/Orange County Register/SCNG)The Angels’ Shohei Ohtani greets owner Arte Moreno before making his Cactus League debut against the Milwaukee Brewers at Tempe Diablo Stadium in Tempe on Saturday, Feb. 24, 2018. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan/Orange County Register/SCNG)The Angels’ Shohei Ohtani heads out to start the second inning during his Cactus League debut against the Milwaukee Brewers at Tempe Diablo Stadium in Tempe on Saturday, Feb. 24, 2018. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan/Orange County Register/SCNG)The Angels’ Shohei Ohtani heads out to start the second inning during his Cactus League debut against the Milwaukee Brewers at Tempe Diablo Stadium in Tempe on Saturday, Feb. 24, 2018. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan/Orange County Register/SCNG)The Angels’ Shohei Ohtani throws to the plate during his Cactus League debut against the Milwaukee Brewers at Tempe Diablo Stadium in Tempe on Saturday, Feb. 24, 2018. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan/Orange County Register/SCNG)The Angels’ Shohei Ohtani is taken out of the game by Manager Mike Scioscia in the second inning of his Cactus League debut against the Milwaukee Brewers at Tempe Diablo Stadium in Tempe on Saturday, Feb. 24, 2018. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan/Orange County Register/SCNG)The Angels’ Shohei Ohtani in the dugout after his Cactus League debut against the Milwaukee Brewers at Tempe Diablo Stadium in Tempe on Saturday, Feb. 24, 2018. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan/Orange County Register/SCNG)The Angels’ Shohei Ohtani warms up before his Cactus League debut against the Milwaukee Brewers at Tempe Diablo Stadium in Tempe on Saturday, Feb. 24, 2018. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan/Orange County Register/SCNG)The Angels’ Shohei Ohtani in the dugout before his Cactus League debut against the Milwaukee Brewers at Tempe Diablo Stadium in Tempe on Saturday, Feb. 24, 2018. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan/Orange County Register/SCNG)The Angels’ Shohei Ohtani in the dugout after his Cactus League debut against the Milwaukee Brewers at Tempe Diablo Stadium in Tempe on Saturday, Feb. 24, 2018. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan/Orange County Register/SCNG)The Angels’ Shohei Ohtani heads to the outfield after his Cactus League debut against the Milwaukee Brewers at Tempe Diablo Stadium in Tempe on Saturday, Feb. 24, 2018. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan/Orange County Register/SCNG)The Angels’ Shohei Ohtani in the dugout after his Cactus League debut against the Milwaukee Brewers at Tempe Diablo Stadium in Tempe on Saturday, Feb. 24, 2018. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan/Orange County Register/SCNG)NextShow Caption1 of 27The Angels’ Shohei Ohtani in the dugout after his Cactus League debut against the Milwaukee Brewers at Tempe Diablo Stadium in Tempe on Saturday, Feb. 24, 2018. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan/Orange County Register/SCNG)ExpandTEMPE, Ariz. — Shohei Ohtani was exposed to one of the most fundamental rules of pitching in the majors on Saturday.“Fastball down the middle … big league hitters are going to take advantage of that,” catcher Martin Maldonado said. “That won’t be the last homer that he’s going to give up.”Although the Angels’ new phenom from Japan gave up two runs, including a homer, in his Cactus League debut, there were enough positives sprinkled throughout his 31-pitch outing to leave him, his manager and his catcher feeling good about the day.“I like what I saw,” Maldonado said. “I think he’s going to progress in his next start.” Villar was one of the five batters that Ohtani started with a ball, which was his primary issue for the game.“As long as you start to get ahead in counts, it will be a whole different story,” Maldonado said.Ohtani walked Ji-Man Choi later in the first, and he threw a wild pitch. The run scored on a throwing error by Maldonado, who was trying to nail Choi taking second on the wild pitch. Ohtani escaped that inning, but then he gave up a homer to Keon Broxton to start the second. He then retired Nick Franklin on a flyout and his outing was over.Ohtani said he had gotten a little cold during the bottom of the inning, while the Angels were batting. In Japan, pitchers can throw in front of the dugout to stay loose while their team is at bat.Ohtani said he’s going to have to learn to deal with that, as well as make sure he gets ahead in the count. He also said his slider wasn’t as good as he’d like, but he was satisfied with his curveball and splitter.“Besides the results, I had a lot of fun,” Ohtani said, speaking through his interpreter in the temporary tent constructed to handle the media crush. “I think it went well. … Every year it’s hard to get into a rhythm at this point. It felt just like any other year. I think I’ll be able to adjust.”The Brewers also seemed to believe Ohtani will have better days ahead.“His splitter is really good,” Brewers outfielder Brett Phillips said. “You can tell that’s what he goes to to strike guys out. That’s what he did to me. It’s very good offspeed. … He definitely has a chance to be really good. I got to see it all.”Related Articleslast_img read more

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Clemson coach Dabo Swinney on ‘ugly’ win over UNC: ‘We’re not perfect’

first_img Mike Leach calls Washington State players ‘fat, dumb, happy and entitled’ after ugly loss Clemson entered Saturday’s game as 28-point favorites, but ended up winning by just a point. The game came down to whether the Tigers could stop UNC’s 2-point conversion attempt with just 1:17 left in the game. “I’ve always had the theory that the longer the game goes, the best team wins, and they have the best team,” North Carolina coach Mack Brown said. “So my thought was, ‘Go now.’ We’ve got momentum, they’re tired, they’re on the field, so that was the best chance for us to win the game.”The Tigers ultimately stepped up in a big moment to stop UNC and stay undefeated through the first five games of the season. “But it’s disrespectful to just put it all on us. You’ve got to give them some credit. Those kids played their heart out, and they coached their hearts out, and they played with tremendous will to win, but I’m proud of my guys because they found a way when we had to have it. We found a way.” Related News Mississippi State’s mascot Bully narrowly avoids disaster vs. Auburn “There’s been a game every year the past four years or so in this program where it’s been close or we lost,” Clemson quarterback Trevor Lawrence, who completed 18 of 30 yards for 206 yards with two total touchdowns, said.”We know it’s hard to win. Sometimes it’s easy to forget that when you win so many games by so many points, but this game is only going to make us better. Obviously, we’d like to win every game by four touchdowns, but it’s going to bring us closer and show us how to appreciate every win and like tonight, just finding a way.”Clemson has a week off before facing Florida State on Oct. 12. Three takeaways from No. 10 Notre Dame’s win over No. 18 Virginia No. 1 Clemson barely escaped Saturday’s game against unranked North Carolina with a 21-20 win as coach Dabo Swinney admitted the Tigers weren’t perfect.”It’s not easy to win,” Swinney told reporters (via ESPN). “I know we’re supposed to destroy everybody, like nobody else has scholarships, nobody else has coaches. It doesn’t work that way. We’re just normal people. There’s nothing special about us. We’re not perfect. We don’t coach perfect. Unfortunately, we don’t play perfect every down, every game, but we found a way to win an ugly game.last_img read more

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