Shohei Ohtani Exits Angels Game Early With Concerning Injury

Devon Platana
Shohei Ohtani exited Thursday's Los Angeles Angels game with a concerning injury.
Shohei Ohtani exited Thursday's Los Angeles Angels game with a concerning injury. / Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

The Los Angeles Angels were defeated by the Toronto Blue Jays, 6-3, on Thursday and lost one of their best players in the process. Shohei Ohtani was pulled from the game in the eighth inning with back stiffness, leaving fans to be concerned about the American League MVP candidate's future.

Angels manager Joe Maddon provided an update on Ohtani's injury after the game that didn't exactly help with any concerns. Although Maddon did say that the injury likely isn't serious, he was unsure if the talented dual-threat will suit up against the Blue Jays on Friday.

Shohei Ohtani Injury Update

Ohtani also spoke with reporters, telling them that he thinks he injured his back on a slider in the first inning. He ended up pitching a total of six innings, giving up five runs on six hits while striking out 10 batters.

The Angels only trail the Houston Astros by 2.5 games in the AL West race. Losing Ohtani for any period of time would hurt Los Angeles' chances of catching their rivals.

Ohtani's MVP-like play has been a major reason behind his club's early success. On the mound, he's 3-3 in eight starts with a 3.45 ERA and 1.038 WHIP with 63 strikeouts over 44.1 IP. Meanwhile, he's also racked up nine home runs and is tied for sixth-most AL RBIs with 29.

The best-case scenario is for Ohtani to only miss a game or two to make sure that his back heals properly. Assuming he can pick up from where he left off whenever he returns, the 27-year-old is still FanDuel Sportsbook's +220 favorite to win his second straight AL MVP.

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Devon Platana is not a FanDuel employee. In addition to providing DFS gameplay advice, Devon Platana also participates in DFS contests on FanDuel using his personal account, username PepeSilvia0. While the strategies and player selections recommended in his articles are his personal views, he may deploy different strategies and player selections when entering contests with his personal account. The views expressed in their articles are the author's alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of FanDuel.