MLB: Shohei Ohtani intends to return for Angels’ finale vs. White Sox
The Los Angeles Angels, who have won seven of eight, aim to take three of four from the host Chicago White Sox as the teams conclude a four-game series on Monday afternoon.
Angels star Shohei Ohtani hopes to assist in the effort.
Ohtani exited his duties as designated hitter on in the ninth inning Sunday due to right groin tightness, with the ailment having occurred when he grounded into a double play two innings earlier.
While Ohtani’s translator told reporters that the two-way star plans to play on Monday, manager Joe Maddon would not speculate on whether Ohtani might have to miss a turn on the mound in the Angels’ three-game road series against the Boston Red Sox that starts Tuesday.
Between Ohtani’s ailment appearing to be minor and Los Angeles holding on for a win on Sunday, the Angels emerged feeling relieved, if not lucky.
Carrying a 6-0 lead into the ninth inning with right-hander Michael Lorenzen primed for his first career complete game and shutout, Los Angeles escaped with a 6-5 win over the White Sox, recording the final out with the bases loaded.
Lorenzen and fellow right-handers Raisel Iglesias and Ryan Tepera recorded one out apiece in the final inning.
“I’ve been in the bullpen my whole career, so I know that (Iglesias and Tepera), you see 6-0 and I’ve been cruising, they’re not expecting to have to come into the game,” Lorenzen said. “Kudos to them for coming in and picking up my slack.”
Losers of 11 of 13, the White Sox were three outs from being shut out for the second time in six games.
Chicago sent 11 men to the plate in the ninth inning while collecting six hits.
“We fought. We fought in the ninth. That’s a positive,” center fielder Luis Robert said through a translator. “We were able to come back in that ninth inning. It was good for us.
“Even though we didn’t win the game, it was a good battle and we know that we’re not passing a very good moment, but a game like today, the battle that we had in the ninth inning was good.”
The top of the White Sox’s lineup remains consistent. Leadoff man Tim Anderson is 7-for-13 with a home run and two RBIs in the first three games of the series. He is batting .375 (24-for-64) with three home runs and eight RBIs in 15 games against Los Angeles since 2019.
Robert, the No. 2 hitter on Sunday, is starting to heat up, going 3-for-9 in the past two games. He returned to the lineup Friday following a stint on the injured list with a groin strain.
Robert connected for a three-run home run in Chicago’s 4-0 victory on Saturday and added two singles Sunday.
Left-hander Patrick Sandoval will try to pitch the Angels to a series victory. Sandoval (1-0, 0.00 ERA) has struck out 20 in 15 scoreless innings over three starts to begin the season. He is 0-1 with a 6.23 ERA in one career start against the White Sox.
Sandoval will oppose Chicago right-hander Dylan Cease (2-1, 3.27 ERA), who is 0-1 with a 6.23 ERA in three career starts against the Angels, with 13 strikeouts in 13 innings.
Chicago outfielder Andrew Vaughn may return to the lineup Monday after he was hit with a pitch on his right wrist Friday, manager Tony La Russa said.
Angels manager Joe Maddon elected not to adjust the rotation to allow right-hander Noah Syndergaard to pitch in the series. Syndergaard was scheduled to start Friday but was scratched before the game due to illness.
Syndergaard told reporters before throwing a bullpen session Sunday that he was feeling better, and he is set to take the mound Tuesday in Boston.
–Field Level Media