Shohei Ohtani had his third multi-hit MLB game as the Los Angeles Angels came from behind to beat the Kansas City Royals 5-4 on Friday.
In front of a crowd of 15,011 at Kauffman Stadium, Ohtani opened his day with his first career double in the second. The 23-year-old, who was moved up one spot in the batting order to seventh, delivered a line drive to left off Royals starter Jason Hammel.
With the Angels behind 4-3 in the eighth, Ohtani took a crucial role in their upset victory with his second hit of the game. After a 2-2 pitch count and a runner on first, he singled to center off right-hander Justin Grimm (0-2) in his fourth at-bat.
Ohtani moved to third with Luis Valbuena's RBI single that tied the game, then the Japanese star ran home on Ian Kinsler's sacrifice fly to score the go-ahead run.
"I'm glad I made an opportunity for my team with my second hit," Ohtani said. "The ball dropped in a good spot. (Grimm) has good curve balls, so I thought he would pitch those balls, but I'm glad that I was able to hit."
(The Angels' Shohei Ohtani doubles in his first at-bat against the Royals.)
He had multi-hit games earlier in the month, when he hit eighth as designated hitter.
Albert Pujols opened the scoring with a third-inning, two-run home run to put the Angels ahead and hit an RBI single in the seventh after the Royals had made it 4-2.
Ohtani, who is 2-0 on the mound, is scheduled to make his next pitching start on Sunday against Royals rookie Eric Skoglund.
"I think we've found a good rhythm and today's game was also great, so I hope to ride that momentum and do my best," Ohtani said.
At Wrigley Field, Yu Darvish (0-1) surrendered an four-run fifth and took his first loss with Chicago in the Cubs' 4-0 defeat by the Atlanta Braves.
Darvish allowed nine hits and issued four walks, while striking out four, over 4-2/3 innings. Friday's game was his third start and his second where he pitched less than five innings, since signing with the Cubs in February.
(Ohtani high-fives skipper Mike Scioscia after the Angels won their sixth in a row.)