Dodgers Video: Shohei Ohtani Throws For First Time Since Most Recent Elbow Surgery

Minutes after Shohei Ohtani made his first public comments in response to former interpreter Ippei Mizuhara’s illegal sports betting, he joined Los Angeles Dodgers teammates on the field before Monday’s Freeway Series game at Dodger Stadium.

Ohtani appeared to be in good spirits as he played catch with Dodgers vice president of player performance Brandon McDaniel while head athletic trainer Thomas Albert closely watched. It was the first time Ohtani has thrown — at least within public view — since his right elbow surgery in September 2023.

“I think that Shohei and the training stuff had a lot of good dialogue,” Dodgers manager Dave Roberts said. “And I was looking forward to hearing about today and starting his throwing progressions. He got up to 45 feet.

“So I think that he’s very anxious, and I think he wants to continue to get going and keep moving forward. So I don’t know if he’s going to be off tomorrow with throwing, or if he’s going to throw the next day, but I’m sure in the next two days he’ll be throwing again, but I don’t know the distance or how many throws quite yet.”

The light session was in line with Roberts previously revealing the plan was for Ohtani to start his throwing program when the Dodgers returned from the Seoul Series.

Tuesday is six months and one week since Ohtani had the second right elbow surgery of his career on Sept. 19, 2023.

While it’s certainly a positive development in the rehab process, the Dodgers have remained steadfast that Ohtani will not pitch during the 2024 season, but possibly playing the outfield could be under consideration.

“We’ll see how that progression goes. If his arm is healthy enough, we’ll have that conversation about the field,” Roberts said. “I do know he’s not going to pitch this year. Right now, our only focus is him being the designated hitter.”

During a recent interview with the Associated Press, Dr. Neal ElAttrache, who performed Ohtani’s elbow surgery, indicated he would pitch against batters in a simulated environment at some point in September.

Shohei Ohtani denies betting

While Mizuhara remains under investigation due to illegal gambling activity, Ohtani made it clear it’s not something he’s ever participated in while reading from a statement.

“I never bet on baseball or any other sports, or never asked somebody to do that on my behalf. And I have never gone through a bookmaker to bet on sports,” Ohtani said through interpreter Will Ireton.

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