Dodgers Spring Training Highlights: Shohei Ohtani Hits Home Run In Live Batting Practice

Shohei Ohtani has made considerable progress in Spring Training after he had his 2023 season cut short due to elbow and oblique injuries, which included undergoing right elbow surgery in September.

Despite the injuries, the Los Angeles Dodgers made Ohtani the highest paid player in professional sports history, guaranteeing him $700 million on a 10-year contract, and so far he has been impressive in camp.

While a lot of Ohtani’s value has come from his status as a two-way player, he is just going to hit this season as he rehabs his elbow. With just his bat, Ohtani is still an impact player, but he is still getting back on track after a limited offseason.

Ohtani has been taking batting practice recently, and the plan was for him to face live pitching soon. He reached that point on Monday as he took three at-bats against Dodgers’ pitchers.

Ohtani had been scheduled to face live pitching in the previous few days, but those plans changed as the team is letting him dictate his process.

Even with the changes, Dodgers manager Dave Roberts insisted the slugger is healthy.

Ohtani proved that on Monday as he homered in his third live at-bat while facing J.P. Feyereisen. It came on the fifth pitch of his plate appearance with a no-doubter homer.

In his first at-bat, Ohtani did not swing and instead just tracked pitches. He battled with Blake Treinen in his second at-bat, but ended up striking out.

In total, Ohtani saw 15 pitches, swinging at four of them. He will likely continue to face live pitching again within the next few days as he continues to progress toward appearing in a game.

Shohei Ohtani not playing Cactus League opener

Roberts said Ohtani won’t play in the Dodgers’ Cactus League opener on Thursday, which isn’t any major surprise. But the expectation remains he will get into games at some point this spring.

The Dodgers’ top priority is getting Ohtani ready for the start of the regular season, which begins with the Seoul Series from March 20-21, giving them roughly one month to get him ready to go.

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