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Angels’ Shohei Ohtani looks for first career win vs. Astros

Sportsnaut
Apr 14, 2022; Arlington, Texas, USA; Los Angeles Angels starting pitcher Shohei Ohtani (17) prepares to deliver a pitch to the Texas Rangers during the first inning of a baseball game at Globe Life Field. Mandatory Credit: Jim Cowsert-USA TODAY Sports1
Credit: Jim Cowsert-USA TODAY Sports

Houston Astros second baseman Jose Altuve remains day-to-day with a left-hamstring strain and will miss the finale of a three-game home series against the Los Angeles Angels on Wednesday evening.

Altuve suffered the injury legging out an infield single in the eighth inning of the series opener — an 8-3 Houston win — on Monday. He was not in the lineup Tuesday as the Angels evened the series with a 7-2 victory.

The Astros opted not to place Altuve on the 10-day injured list. Houston manager Dusty Baker expressed satisfaction after visiting with Altuve prior to the game on Tuesday, noting that he completed moderate exercises and seemed to be in good spirits despite the injury concern.

“A few days at least,” Baker said when asked how long Altuve will be unavailable. “You just want to make sure that he’s OK and you don’t pull that thing. That’s why we haven’t placed him on the IL, because it might not be the full term.”

Veteran right-hander Jake Odorizzi (0-1, 6.48 ERA) will make his third start of the season for the Astros in the series finale against the Angels. He allowed four runs on eight hits and three walks with one strikeout over 4 1/3 innings in his most recent outing, an 11-1 loss at the Seattle Mariners on Friday.

Odorizzi is 1-3 with a 4.95 ERA over nine career starts against the Angels. He faced them in his first start this season on April 8, when he surrendered two runs on six hits with two strikeouts over four innings. He did not factor into the decision in the Astros’ 13-6 road victory.

Right-hander Shohei Ohtani (0-2, 7.56 ERA) will start for the Angels in what will be his third start overall and second on the road. He took the loss at the Texas Rangers on April 14, allowing six runs on six hits and two walks with five strikeouts over 3 2/3 innings in a 10-5 setback. He was the Angels’ Opening Day starter against the Astros on April 7, when he surrendered one run, four hits and one walk with nine strikeouts over 4 2/3 innings in a 3-1 loss.

In six career starts against Houston, Ohtani is 0-3 with a 5.92 ERA and 32 strikeouts in 24 1/3 innings. His three losses are his most against any opponent.

The Angels were without center fielder Mike Trout for a second consecutive game on Tuesday, but Trout appears to be on track to return soon after sustaining a left-hand contusion Sunday. Trout was hit by a pitch in the fifth inning vs. the Texas Rangers and was removed from the game.

“Hopefully by (Wednesday),” Angels manager Joe Maddon said regarding when Trout might return to the lineup. “He tested it a little bit, a little bit sore again.

“He swung a little bit inside somewhere, not to the point of wanting to push it but just to get a feel for it. Although he’s made a lot of progress from (Monday to Tuesday), let’s wait and see what he feels like Wednesday because there is a shot (at playing).”

–Field Level Media