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Shohei Ohtani joins Babe Ruth in exclusive club with 500 strikeouts as a pitcher and 100 home runs as a hitter

Shohei Ohtani may only be in his sixth year of MLB, but he is already one of the greatest players to ever grace the league. 

Shohei Ohtani, the Los Angeles Angels’ two-way superstar, continues to amaze fans and make history in baseball. On Wednesday, May 3, he achieved a significant career milestone by striking out 13 batters against the St. Louis Cardinals, reaching his 500th career strikeout. This achievement puts him in an elite group with Babe Ruth as the only players in baseball history to achieve 500 strikeouts as a pitcher and 100 home runs as a hitter. 

However, Ohtani’s career milestone does not stop there. In the Angels’ 3-1 loss to the Houston Astros on Tuesday night at the Angel Stadium, Ohtani struck out the 502nd batter of his career, surpassing Ruth’s total as a pitcher. Ohtani also became the player with the most pitching strikeouts among players to also hit at least 100 career home runs. 

“It’s a great thing that I could pass [Ruth], but I felt like I could’ve struck out more hitters today,” Ohtani said. “It’s still a long season. It’s still early. I just want to stay healthy and end the season healthy.”

Babe Ruth’s career lasted 22 years, though he pitched during just 10 seasons. He finished with 501 career pitching strikeouts, according to the Elias Sports Bureau — the statistical entity that Major League Baseball follows — and 714 home runs. (Different stats websites cite Ruth as having just 488 career strikeouts). Shohei Ohtani now has 507 career strikeouts in just 395 2/3 innings.

Once again, the humble Ohtani has destroyed the perception of MLB baseball. And as of late, he currently has a career ERA of 2.93, has made 136 home runs as a batter, and has only allowed 130 runs as a pitcher. 


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