Babe Ruth & Shohei Ohtani: The Greatest 2-Way Players of All-Time
Shohei Ohtani, a name synonymous with Babe Ruth for being the greatest two-way players of all time. An incredible comparison for somebody at such a young age (currently 26)
Some fans may scoff at the comparison, but the fact of the matter is that he is a generational talent which we are blessed to see. Not very often do you get to see a man throw & well. My only question is this; Are the Angels using him correctly? His skills are apparent, but I believe they could get MORE production out of Sho-Time.
Let Him Loose
Shohei's batting is not the problem. Over a full 162, he's averaging 31 HR to go along with a .270 BA and a .340 OBP. He can also flash some speed, averaging 19 steals through a complete season. These stats are comparable to… NYM star SS Francisco Lindor (not bad company I would say). Not a soul should complain about his batting numbers.
His pitching numbers though, might give critics something to complain about. Since entering the league in 2018, he has only pitched 58 innings. He was shut down completely in 2019, and only pitched in 2 games in 2020 (in which he got rocked). He holds a career 4-3 W-L record, with a 4.19 ERA. Not ideal numbers for a SP. The Angels have already stated they plan to pull back the reigns & let him loose this season, but could they get more out of the two-way phenom? What would it look like, if they brought Shohei out of the pen?
Minor Change, Major Results
Here's a thought. Bat Ohtani 2nd as they have all season, don't change a thing there. Fletcher, Ohtani, Trout, Rendon. That's a hell of a top 4; Borderline the best in baseball.
Now, this is where things get interesting. Imagine this scenario; Dylan Bundy starts the game & pitches a strong 6, Angels are up 3-2, & they bring in Raisel Iglesias as the set-up man. He'll pitch the 7th and/or 8th. Now, top of the 9th, Shohei Ohtani comes in to close out the game.
Please try & name me a more electric regular season, everyday scenario. You can't. So you're telling me that if Sho-Time is 2-3 with a long bomb already in the game & comes in for the save, slanging that ball at 100mph, the whole place wouldn't lose their mind? Kick rocks pal. It's like combing Aroldis Chapman and Aaron Judge. Josh Harder and Christian Yelich. Liam Hendricks and Eloy Jimenez. He's a created player, in real life. A cheat code. Do all the logistics work out? I have no idea, but it's fun to think about.