Ohtani Shohei (28, Los Angeles Angels) doesn’t know how to end the race.
MLB Dotcom, the official website of Major League Baseball, announced on the 4th (Korea Standard Time) that it has selected Otani as the Player of the 메이저놀이터 Month for June. He also said he was selected as the American League’s Player of the Week along with Domingo Herman (New York Yankees).
Otani’s June was “all-time.” He also had excellent pitching performance with one win and a 3.02 ERA in 30 1/3 innings in five games, but his batting performance was enormous. In 27 games, he had a batting average of 0.394 (41 hits in 104 at-bats) with 15 home runs and 29 RBIs, and a 0.952 OPS (the sum of the on-base percentage and slugging percentage) of 1.444. He is dominating the American League home run race this season with a ridiculous record of 15 home runs per month.
The pace didn’t cool until the last week of June. It was rather hotter. He hit six home runs in seven games, spurring the home run king this season. “Ottani continued his historic season last week,” MLB Dotcom said. “It’s natural that I was selected,” he said.
Thanks to his pitching and hitting performance, he is also considered a 0th candidate for his second American League MVP (best player). Based on baseball reference, Otani’s WAR (contribution to victory over substitute players) this season is already 6.7 at the moment when he has played about half of the season. It can surpass the 2021 performance, which was about 9.0, within the summer at the earliest, and it is also likely to achieve more than 10 that will be considered “all-time.” Barry Bonds (2001, 2002), Mookie Betts (2018), Aaron Judge (2022), Mike Trout (2012, 2016), and Jack Greinke (2009) are the only players to record baseball reference WARs in the 21st century and beyond.
Herman, who was selected as the player of the week along with Otani, drew attention by achieving the 24th perfect game in MLB history even against the Oakland Athletics on the 29th of last month. It was the first milestone in 11 years since King Felix (then the Seattle Mariners) in 2012. Unlike Otani, his performance of the season was sluggish, but he is worthy of becoming a player of the week as he made history.