HOUSTON — Shohei Ohtani’s night started much better than it ended.
Although he hit his major league-leading 43rd home run in the first inning, Ohtani was knocked out of the game in the fourth inning and charged with six runs in the Angels’ 10-5 loss to the Houston Astros on Friday night.
Ohtani (9-2) failed in his first attempt at becoming the Angels’ first 10-game winner since 2018, and he saw his eight-game winning streak snapped.
In his first outing after throwing a career-high 117 pitches last Friday, Ohtani clearly was not on his game this time.
Ohtani gave up a career-high nine hits and he struck out just one. It was the first time in his career he pitched at least three innings without multiple strikeouts.
In the first inning, Ohtani worked around two hits. He got a double play to help him escape the second without allowing a run.
In the third, though, he gave four more hits. Alex Bregman and Carlos Correa each punched singles up the middle to drive in runs, and Yordan Alvarez drilled a ball off the fence in right-center.
The Angels got those runs back and actually handed Ohtani a 4-3 lead when he took the mound in the fourth, but he couldn’t get through another inning.
Three of the first four batters of the fourth inning reached base, scoring a run to tie the game and chasing Ohtani.
Reliever Andrew Wantz, who had been reliable through his first 13 big league outings, then allowed the game to get away.
Wantz gave up a double, a walk and a single to push home two more runs. Kyle Tucker then reached on a catcher’s interference with the bases loaded, driving in another run. Aledmys Diaz then singled to drive in two more, giving the Astros a 9-4 lead.
Jo Adell continued to be a bright spot for the Angels. He launched a triple off the fence in right center, and he circled the bases when the throw hit him as he slid into third and bounced away.
More to come on this story.
Pitchers who rake! That’s 44. pic.twitter.com/IkxBXs0ARp
— MLB (@MLB) September 11, 2021