ANAHEIM — With the Angels getting ready to dropping a chain to the Nationals and falling to 2nd position within the American League West, Shohei Ohtani and Anthony Rendon had different concepts.
Ohtani smacked a game-tying two-run double off Washington nearer Tanner Rainey with two outs within the 9th to tie the sport at 4-4. And Rendon adopted with a walk-off RBI unmarried to heart to torment his former membership and lead the Angels to an exhilarating 5-4 win on Sunday afternoon at Angel Stadium. It helped the division-leading Halos support to 19-11 and used to be a favorable signal from each Ohtani and Rendon, who’ve scuffled a little bit offensively by way of their requirements early this season.
“That was just unlikely, improbable, especially with the way they were pitching us,” Angels manager Joe Maddon said. “We really weren’t making any contact, let alone hard contact. But we’ve been good lately and the boys came through. Sho, who has struggled, hit that one off the wall. And then Tony squared that one up. I really liked him in that moment and he is definitely going to get some momentum in his system right there.”
The Angels entered the inning down by way of two runs, as they didn’t get a lot going offensively at the afternoon. Pinch-hitter Luis Rengifo drew a one-out stroll and complex on a unmarried from Taylor Ward. Mike Trout struck out, leaving all of it as much as Ohtani, who has been running to hit the ball the wrong way in fresh video games after suffering a little bit on the plate.
Ohtani just about hit it out, as he ripped an 0-1 slider off the bottom of the wall in heart box to attain Rengifo and Ward and tie the sport. It used to be the type of large hit that Ohtani has been on the lookout for, as he’s batting .235/.302/.383 with 4 homers and 16 RBIs in 29 video games this 12 months after hitting .257/.372/.592 ultimate 12 months when he received the AL MVP.
Ohtani, who’s because of make his subsequent get started at the mound on Wednesday towards the Rays, mentioned it used to be a just right signal for him to proceed to take a look at to force the ball the wrong way.
“The last couple games, I’ve actually been feeling better,” Ohtani said through interpreter Ippei Mizuhara. “I’ve been getting a better angle on the balls that I’m hitting and they’re going in the air. So I think in a few more days, I should be able to get there.”
Rendon temporarily ended it with a unmarried to heart box on a 1-0 fastball from Rainey, as Ohtani simply slightly beat the throw house from heart fielder Victor Robles to provide the Angels their 2nd walk-off win of the 12 months. Ohtani started the party at house plate as umpire Adam Hamari dominated him protected to finish the sport.
“I was just thinking about getting home,” Ohtani mentioned. “But I felt with the way the ball landed, I knew I was going to be able to score.”
It used to be additionally the fourth walk-off hit of Rendon’s profession, but it surely used to be his first since becoming a member of the Angels. And it got here off a former teammate in Rainey, with whom he performed in Washington in 2019, when the Nationals received the Global Collection.
Rendon mentioned he wasn’t on the lookout for a selected pitch from Rainey, however as soon as he noticed the fastball up, he jumped on it.
“I just knew he had a great fastball and a devasting slider from playing behind him,” Rendon said. “I just wanted to try to see a pitch up and get a barrel on it. But I mean, it would’ve been easier if Shohei hit it over the fence.”
Rendon, despite the fact that, didn’t put any added importance to the walk-off hit, although he’s been looking for his approach offensively this 12 months and it got here towards his former crew. Rendon is batting .213/.321/.362 with 3 homers and 13 RBIs in 26 video games. And whilst he is aware of he is able to extra offensively, he isn’t lamenting it, for the reason that crew has been profitable.
“I may just care much less,” Rendon mentioned. “I’ll hit .200 if it means we’re still winning games. Yeah, it’s frustrating, but not many people get to feel what we felt when we won the World Series and were the last team standing. It means a lot more than any personal accomplishment, because this is a team game.”