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Shohei Ohtani hits home run in historic start, but leaves game vs. White Sox after painful fifth inning

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Shohei Ohtani’s historic start Sunday night started with a bang, but ended in pain.   

After pitching a shutout inning to open the game at Angel Stadium, Ohtani – who was batting second in the lineup – clobbered a home run on the first pitch he saw from White Sox starter Dylan Cease. It was Ohtani’s second home run of the young season, after hitting his first of 2021 on Friday night.

However, in the fifth inning, Ohtani’s brilliant night came to a devastating halt. Ohtani’s evening ended when Jose Abreu slid into him while scoring the tying run, with Ohtani shaken up on the play.

Ohtani had allowed a hit and two walks, but the inning went from bad to worse when Yoan Moncada swung at strike three with two outs, but the pitch went by Angels catcher Max Stassi. Stassi’s throw to get Moncada out at first base was wild and that allowed two runs to score, tying the game and preventing Ohtani from qualifying for a win. Steve Cishek came in to finish the inning for the Angels. 

Ohtani was experiencing general soreness from the play at the plate and wasn’t removed from the game for injury purposes, ESPN reported. He will be further evaluated Monday.

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