LA Angels: It’s time for Shohei Ohtani to win an MVP

Shohei Ohtani and Mike Trout (Photo by Greg Fiume/Getty Images)
Shohei Ohtani and Mike Trout (Photo by Greg Fiume/Getty Images) /

Mike Trout entered the 2021 MLB season as the clear-cut favorite to take home the AL Most Valuable Player award. But, with a historic debut by Shohei Ohtani on Sunday night, it’s time for a new narrative.

It’s Shohei Ohtani’s turn to win MVP

Ohtani’s night kicked off in historic fashion, simply by showing up to the ballpark. Penciled into the second slot in the lineup card and taking the pitching mound to start, he became the first player since 1903 to start a game as a pitcher and bat second without playing another position. Since 1901, only two players have accomplished that feat. It’s also the first time he’s hit and pitch in the same game throughout his four-year MLB career.

While Trout may own three AL MVP awards and is favored to win his fourth this year, there’s no doubt that Ohtani is the most talented baseball player on the planet. It’s meant as no disrespect to Trout, but it’s impossible to deny the incredible things that Ohtani does on a baseball diamond. Hall of Famer Babe Ruth is the last player to compete seriously as both a pitcher and hitter/position player.

Baseball fans, media, and every single member of the Los Angeles Angels organization are drooling in excitement over the possibility of Ohtani entering this season fully healthy. Sunday night was just the appetizer.

After dealing 100 MPH in the top of the first inning, the 26-year-old stepped to the plate in the bottom of the inning and drilled a mammoth home run. This moonshot home run traveled 450 feet. It was truly a thing of beauty.

Ohtani continued his impressive outing on the mound. While he wasn’t throwing fully to his dominant potential, it was pretty impressive. The two-way phenom clocked several pitches over 100 MPH, striking out seven batters through 4-2/3 innings. He did surrender five walks and one earned run but only allowed two hits.

With this outing, Ohtani immediately climbed to the top of the leaderboards around baseball. According to ESPN Stats & Info, he now owns the fastest pitch by an MLB starting pitcher and the hardest hit HR by exit velocity. He also registered eight pitches over the 100 MPH mark throughout his outing.

Ohtani’s talent is otherworldly. It’s something that the game hasn’t seen since one of its all-time greats. Yes, Trout is already well on track for Hall of Fame induction. But, it’s about time he shared some of his hardware. Ohtani, it’s your turn for MVP. Go out and take it.