A day after the Los Angeles Angels announced Shohei Ohtani would be unable to throw for more than a month, manager Joe Maddon told reporters on Tuesday that he doesn't envision the two-way star throwing again this season.
Maddon said, "I'm not anticipating him pitching at all this year," while speaking with the media prior to the Angels' Tuesday game at Seattle. The manager also told reporters Ohtani could still be a designated hitter this season, though the 26-year-old was not in Tuesday's starting lineup.
As for Ohtani's future as a pitcher, Maddon said he wants Ohtani to get a full spring training before making that determination.
"I'm looking forward to him having a regular spring training, that's what we need to see again, some normalcy before you make that determination," Maddon said.
An MRI exam performed on the Japanese star detected a strain near his throwing elbow. Ohtani will be unable to throw for at least four to six weeks.
General manager Billy Eppler said in a statement that Ohtani was diagnosed with a grade 1-2 strain of the flexor pronator mass.
Ohtani underwent Tommy John surgery following the 2018 season. The Angels have been cautious with him, so given the timetable to resume throwing, it wouldn't be a surprise if he doesn't pitch again until the 2021 season.
Concerns grew Sunday when Ohtani's velocity was down and he had issues finding the strike zone in a start against the Houston Astros.
Ohtani lasted just 1 2/3 innings and walked five. He allowed two runs and no hits and struck out three while throwing 50 pitches. The right-hander wasn't involved in the decision as the Astros won 6-5 in 11 innings.
Ohtani is batting just .148 in 27 at-bats this season. His ERA is 37.80, and he has an 0-1 record in two starts.
--Field Level Media