Angels vs. Athletics, 4:00 ET
This really won’t change anything. If Shohei Ohtani comes out and pitches masterfully against the Athletics, it really won’t make one bit of difference. Same with if he comes out and pitches terribly. If you were going to vote for him for MVP, you’d have already made up your mind. And, as Aaron Judge sits on history, it is really his award to lose (most likely).
Ohtani has been even better as a pitcher than he was in his MVP season from last year. The guy is simply amazing. He has a 15-8 record, is top-10 in ERA and strikeouts, and top-20 in WHIP. This isn’t just your run-of-the-mill starter. No, Ohtani is something special and continues to be something special as we see him adapt to the Major Leagues. That isn’t to say he hasn’t had his fair share of tough starts on the season – he has. But, none of them came against Oakland. In three starts against them, he has only allowed two earned runs over 19.2 innings. He has allowed 18 baserunners, so it isn’t like they are the cleanest of innings, but there are no sustained rallies against him. And, in the last game of the season, I have to assume the Athletics aren’t really that invested.
Kan Waldichuk has the unenviable task of keeping Oakland in the game as Ohtani takes the rubber for the opponents. He’s only had six starts, but they really haven’t been pretty so far. In two home starts, he has allowed seven earned runs in 10.1 innings. That results in a 6.10 ERA. He did start the month off with a decent performance and then he finished it with a decent one as well, but sandwiched in-between were a lot of tough outings. Maybe one thing that works in his favor is that he can baffle the Angels a bit the first time through the lineup – it isn’t like they have much to play for either.
There really is only one way to play this one in my book – I’m taking one final (at least for the regular season) first half, full game moneyline parlay of the Angels at -125. The other options are far too juiced in my book. Normally that would make me want to take a shot with the A’s. With Ohtani on the bump, no thanks.
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