Ohtani breaks MLB record for most home runs by a Japanese player


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Ohtani breaks MLB record for most home runs by a Japanese player

HOME RUN. Los Angeles Dodgers designated hitter Shohei Ohtani (17) celebrates in the dugout with teammates after a home run against the New York Mets during the third inning at Dodger Stadium.

Jonathan Hui/USA TODAY Sports/Reuters

Shohei Ohtani hits his 176th home run as he surpasses Hideki Matsui for most home runs by a Japanese-born player in Major League Baseball

LOS ANGELES, USA – Shohei Ohtani surpassed Hideki Matsui to become the Japanese-born player who has hit the most home runs in Major League Baseball history after the Dodgers slugger launched to right field in the third inning on Sunday, April 21 (Monday, April 22, Manila time).

Ohtani stood and watched as his 176th home run went deep into the stands and smiled as he crossed home plate to break the tie with Matsui and open the scoring against the visiting New York Mets at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles.

Known as a “modern day Babe Ruth” because of his dominance as both a power hitter and pitcher, Ohtani’s record-breaking homer left his bat at 110 miles per hour and traveled 423 feet.

“Honestly I was just relieved I was able to just get it over with, I was just happy I was able to do that,” Ohtani said after the Dodgers 10-0 rout of the Mets, which ended a three-game skid.

“We really want to take this opportunity to start a good streak and obviously we tip our hats to (starting pitcher Tyler) Glasnow for pitching an awesome game.”

Ohtani has an MLB-leading .368 batting average with five home runs and 13 RBIs since joining the Dodgers in the offseason on a record 10-year, $700 million contract.

He will not pitch this season as he recovers from an offseason elbow surgery, but the 29-year-old is expected to return to the mound next year.

Despite his success on the field so far this season, his tenure with the Dodgers got off to a bumpy start when his former interpreter Ippei Mizuhara was accused of stealing $16 million from Ohtani to cover illegal gambling debts.

Prosecutors exonerated Ohtani in the case and Mizuhara apologized to Ohtani, the Dodgers, MLB, and his family through a lawyer after appearing in court on a bank fraud charge earlier this month, where he was released on bond. –

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