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Shohei Ohtani will start All-Star Game for AL, hit leadoff in batting order

MLB’s home run king will be taking the mound for the All-Star Game and hitting atop the AL batting order.

MLB 2021 All-Star Game Preview including Shohei Ohtani and Jesse Winker

Los Angeles Angels star Shohei Ohtani will be taking the mound for the American League in the All-Star Game, according to Jeff Fletcher. The slugger hopes to have the Home Run Derby title when he makes the All-Star game start. UPDATE: Ohtani will also hit lead-off as the designated hitter in the AL batting order.

Ohtani was a highly touted player due to his ability to pitch and hit and the Angels have done well to utilize him in both areas. After not pitching for most of the 2020 season due to a flexor strain, Ohtani has returned to the mound with confidence this year. He’s 4-1 in 13 starts with a 3.49 ERA and has 87 strikeouts. Couple that with his MLB-leading 33 home runs up to this point and you’ve got a superstar talent.

The Angels, unfortunately, have not been successful as a team despite having Ohtani. The team is 45-44 and nine games back of the Houston Astros in the AL West. Los Angeles should get star outfielder Mike Trout back soon, but it might not be enough to make a late run for a postseason berth.