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Sunday, October 1, 2023

Shohei Ohtani Clears Out Locker Amid Angels’ Struggles

Angels superstar Shohei Ohtani cleared out his locker at Angel Stadium after the team’s loss to the Tigers on Friday night, according to reports, and it’s unclear whether the two-way standout will play for the franchise again.

The team didn’t comment on the matter Friday night but a spokesman said it would provide information at some point Saturday. Ohtani is set to become a free agent after the season.

Nearly all of Ohtani’s baseball equipment and belongings were gone from his Angel Stadium locker, with the exception of a full All-Star Game duffel bag, according to Sam Blum of The Athletic. The Angels have 14 games remaining this season. After their current series against Detroit, they play six games on the road before returning to finish the season with a six-game homestand.

Throughout the second half of the season, Ohtani has been dealing with a torn UCL in his elbow, an injury that required him to stop pitching in late August. He initially decided to play through the injury as a hitter, but he last played in a game on Sept. 3 while dealing with a separate oblique injury.

Shohei Ohtani reportedly cleared out his locker at Angel Stadium two weeks before the season ends.

Brad Penner/USA Today network

The Angels were aggressive at the trade deadline, hoping to make the playoffs for the first time with Ohtani. However, the team has struggled of late and currently sits at 68-80, 15 games out of first in the AL West and 13 1/2 games out of a wild-card spot. They’ve lost three games in a row and 13 of their past 18 games overall.

On the season, Ohtani has played in 135 games and totaled an American League-leading 44 home runs, while pitching to a 3.14 ERA in 23 starts.

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