Dodgers Injury Update: Shohei Ohtani Reaches New Milestone In Tommy John Recovery

Shohei Ohtani has exclusively served as a designated hitter in his first season with the Los Angeles Dodgers, but continues to make progress toward a return to the mound.

Ohtani still will not pitch this season, but his recovery has thus far gone smoothly.

The two-way star has been throwing from long distances as part of his recovery from a second right elbow surgery and hit 80 mph in a recent session.

Ohtani has now advanced to playing catch from 90 feet, via David Vassegh of AM 570 L.A. Sports:

The Dodgers can afford to be cautious with him and play the long game with no chance of him pitching this year. If all continues to go well in his recovery, he should be able to return to the mound next year and give the team another frontline starter.

Ohtani has not pitched in a big league game since Aug. 23, 2023, against the Cincinnati Reds.

In parts of five seasons as a pitcher with the Los Angeles Angels, Ohtani went 38-19 with a 3.01 ERA, 3.30 FIP, 1.08 WHIP and 11.4 strikeouts per nine over 481.2 innings (86 starts). He finished fourth in American League Cy Young Award voting during the 2022 season.

Ohtani has shown that his latest elbow surgery is not having any impact on his ability as a hitter. It offers hope that he can have a similar recovery as a pitcher and be an effective starter for the Dodgers down the line.

Shohei Ohtani misses pitching

It was reported earlier this season that Ohtani would be willing to give up pitching if the Dodgers asked him to. The 29-year-old seemingly threw cold water on that notion when he admitted he misses that part of the game.

Ohtani’s comments suggest he still has a passion for pitching and plans to continue implementing it as part of his game.

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