The first time we will see reigning AL MVP Shohei Ohtani in 2022 will be on the mound.
As Sam Blum of The Athletic reports, the Los Angeles Angels have officially named Ohtani as the club’s Opening Day starter.
News: Shohei Ohtani is pitching opening day for the Angels.— Sam Blum (@SamBlum3) March 25, 2022
While the Angels signed former New York Mets pitcher Noah Syndergaard to a one-year, $21 million contract this offseason, Ohtani represents the obvious choice. The 27-year-old made 23 starts in 2021, posting a 3.18 ERA with 156 strikeouts over 130 innings.
Ohtani’s first start will come at home against the new-look Texas Rangers. The latter spent over half a billion dollars combined on second baseman Marcus Semien, shortstop Corey Seager, outfielder Kole Calhoun, and pitcher Jon Gray.
In addition to his prowess on the mound, Ohtani will continue to handle his usual designated hitter spot, where he hit .257 with 46 home runs and 100 RBIs in 158 games.
FanDuel Sportsbook currently has the Angels holding the second-best odds to win the American League West (+400).