Shohei Ohtani (Los Angeles Angels), who tore a ligament in his right elbow and decided to give up his pitching duties and focus solely on hitting for the remainder of the season, has fallen from the top spot in Major League Baseball (MLB) home runs.
Matt Olson (Atlanta Braves) hit his 45th home run of the season in the sixth inning against the St. Louis Cardinals at Truiste Park in Atlanta, Georgia, U.S., on June 6.
It was his second straight game with a home run after hitting one the day before.
Ohtani now leads the American League with 44 home runs, well ahead of second-place Lewis Roberts (Chicago White Sox-35).
The National League is a three-way race between Olson, Pete Alonso (New York Mets-42) and Kyle Schwarber (Philadelphia Phillies-40).
Olson lost the MLB home run lead to Ohtani at the 43-homer mark on May 19, then slipped to second place five days later when Ohtani hit his 44th home run of the season on May 24.
While Ohtani paused at 44, Olson fired up the cannon on back-to-back days on the fifth and sixth to regain sole possession of the lead.
Allowing Olson to overtake him, Ohtani was benched for a second day.
Ohtani, who left the game against the Baltimore Orioles on May 5 after feeling soreness in his side during batting practice, did not play in the game against Baltimore.
“There’s a little bit of inflammation in his side, but nothing that I would call an injury,” Angels manager Phil Nevin said after the game. “He wanted to play today, but we decided he needed another day of rest.”
Ohtani’s injured right elbow ligament is a less impacted area, so he’s been playing regularly.
“That’s the kind of person he is,” Nevin said, noting that Ohtani asked to be allowed to play every day as a hitter after the injury. That’s the kind of person he is, and that’s why he’s so upset that he can’t play now because of his injury.”
“Even today, he said he wanted to play, but I didn’t allow him to play because I thought he needed more time,” he added. 토토사이트