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Shohei Ohtani-Mike Trout Face Off In Ninth Inning Of World Baseball Classic

Written by Tony Ghaul

Tuesday night was the titanic matchup between Team USA and Team Japan in the finals of the 2023 World Baseball Classic. Each team was being led by a Los Angeles Angels star. For the United States, they have Mike Trout. For Japan, they have Shohei Ohtani.

The dream matchup finally happened at the top of the ninth inning. Shohei Ohtani, pitching relief while Japan was holding on to a one-run lead, faced Angels teammate Mike Trout for the most pivotal at-bat of the contest.

Ohtani struck out Trout in six pitches to seal the deal and give Japan the 3-2 victory. In addition to his showing on the mound, Ohtani also went 1-for-3 with a walk during his at-bats.

After the game, Shohei Ohtani revealed that he was surprised that Mike Trout would turn out to be the last out of the contest.

“I was not expecting him to be literally the last batter of the game,” Shohei Ohtani said via an interpreter while getting interviewed on FOX Sports and with baseball legends Alex Rodriguez and David Ortiz listening to him. “I thought it was a possibility, but I can’t believe that he was actually the last batter of the game.”

Ohtani was incredible during Japan’s entire run in the 2023 World Baseball Classic. During the tournament, Ohtani went 10-for-45 for a .435 batting average to go with a 1.345 OPS. As for pitching, he posted a 1.86 ERA, a 0.72 WHIP, 11 strikeouts, two wins, and a save in 9.2 innings of work on the mound.

Photo courtsey of The Sporting News

About the author

Tony Ghaul