With a 446-foot HR, Ohtani left his mark on the Dodgers-Giants rivalry

With a 446-foot HR, Ohtani left his mark on the Dodgers-Giants rivalry
With a 446-foot HR, Ohtani left his mark on the Dodgers-Giants rivalry

SAN FRANCISCO – This winter, the Giants were one of the teams that made compelling offers to Shohei Ohtani. After offering him a contract similar to the one he ended up signing with the Dodgers, the Giants were finalists for the Japanese star’s services until the last moment.

But instead of signing the two-time unanimous American League MVP, the Giants now have to watch Ohtani suit up for the Dodgers at least 12 times a year for the next decade.

For the first time in the long rivalry, Ohtani made his mark at Oracle Park, leading the Dodgers to a 10-2 win over the Giants Tuesday night with three hits and a long home run to right field.

“The image I have of the stadium is that of a very beautiful, historic park. I really like the view of this stadium,” Ohtani declared through his interpreter, Will Ireton. “I’ve seen Barry Bonds hit a lot of home runs, so I’m aware of the Dodgers-Giants rivalry.”

After having the day off Sunday while recovering from lower back stiffness, Ohtani returned to the lineup in Los Angeles on Monday and made his presence felt with an RBI infield hit. But on Monday, Ohtani looked completely healthy and didn’t waste any mistakes.

With the score tied at zero after three innings, Ohtani put the Dodgers on the board with a huge homer against right-hander Keaton Winn. As soon as Ohtani made contact with the ball, there was no doubt that the drive was going to land in the stands. The only question was whether he would fall into the water.

“There are few hitters who can hit the ball to that part of the stadium and that far away,” said Dodgers manager Dave Roberts. “Luckily, I played with one of them here [Bonds]but this hit was very impressive.”

The ball ended up bouncing off the pedestrian walkway, coming within a few feet of landing in McCovey Cove. Ohtani’s homer had an exit velocity of 113.4 mph and had a projected distance of 446 feet, according to Statcast, the third-longest home run by a Dodgers designated hitter this season.

“I thought I did it today,” exclaimed a smiling Ohtani when asked if he thought he had completely cleared the section of the stadium known as Levi’s Landing and sent the ball into the bay. “I was a little disappointed that I didn’t make it.”

Ohtani has now had two hits or more in three of his five games against the Giants this season, and has hit two home runs. It didn’t take long for the Dodgers to reap the benefits of Ohtani on their roster – and for the San Francisco team to regret what he could have been.

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