June 28, 2023 -ANAHEIM, Calif. (AP) — Shohei Ohtani already knows he is headed to the All-Star Game in two weeks. It remains unclear whether he will take part in the Home Run Derby in Seattle on July 10.
“I don’t know when my next (pitching) start is and it really kind of depends on that. I haven’t thought that far ahead yet,” Ohtani said through his interpreter after the Los Angeles Angels beat the Chicago White Sox 4-2 Tuesday night.
The two-way Japanese superstar leads the majors with 28 home runs, including 13 in June. He became the first American League pitcher in nearly 60 years to hit two homers and strike out 10 batters in a game in Tuesday’s victory.
Ohtani led the AL with 2,646,307 votes to wrap up his third straight All-Star start at designated hitter. It is the second year the top vote-getters in each league in the first phase of online voting get starting spots.
Ohtani participated in the 2021 Home Run Derby in Denver. He lost to Juan Soto 31-28 in the second swing-off in the first round. Ohtani was also the AL’s starting pitcher that year.
He did not take part in last year’s Derby despite it being held at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles. Ohtani cited pitching the Angels’ first game after the All-Star break as a reason.