Japanese two-way star Shohei Ohtani hit his 17th homer of the season and drove in a career-high five runs as the Los Angeles Angels edged the Chicago White Sox 8-7 on Saturday.
Ohtani, who started in the cleanup spot, hit a two-run double off White Sox starter Dylan Covey (1-8) in his first at-bat in the first inning to give the Angels an early lead at Guaranteed Rate Field.
In his second at-bat in the third inning, he connected off Covey again, this time a go-ahead three-run drive that broke a 2-2 tie. The opposite-field shot was the designated hitter’s first homer since Aug. 18.
“I wasn’t aiming for a homer. I just wanted to swing well,” said Ohtani, who also singled and stole second on a 3-for-5 night.
“It’s been a while (since I hit a homer). I feel like I’ve done my job. It was close but it’s good that we won,” he said.
Los Angeles starter Andrew Heaney (4-4) allowed four runs and six hits in six innings for the win. He struck out eight and walked none.
Jose Abreu hit a three-run homer to pull the White Sox to within one run in the seventh, but Ty Buttrey retired the side in order in the eighth and Hansel Robles pitched a perfect ninth for his 20th save.
At Miller Park in Milwaukee, Yu Darvish pitched five scoreless innings but did not figure in the decision as the Milwaukee Brewers beat the Chicago Cubs 3-2 on a walk-off double by Christian Yelich.
Darvish, who skipped a start due to right forearm tightness, yielded just three hits while striking out seven and walking one.
“My forearm hasn’t been in good condition for two months and I was worried, but I was able to pitch without feeling any tightness. We’ll see how it feels tomorrow, but I’ll just do what I can,” Darvish said.
At Minute Maid Park in Texas, Yusei Kikuchi also took a no-decision in the Seattle Mariners’ 2-1 loss to the Houston Astros.
Kikuchi was relieved after he gave up a game-tying solo homer to Alex Bregman in the sixth. He was charged with one run on five hits and two walks with five strikeouts in five-plus innings of work.
“We dropped the first two games (of the four-game series) so I didn’t want the same thing to happen today. It (the pitch to Bregman) wasn’t a bad one, he was better,” Kikuchi said.