By Pete Zarustica
It wasn’t a great start of the 2018 season for the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim, but it did have some indications of better days to come.
The Halos opened the year with a 6-5 extra-inning loss to the Oakland A’s in the Bay area Thursday, posting a loss after losing a 4-0 lead.
But much of the attention was focused on Shohei Ohtani, the two-way player from Japan who batted in the designated hitter slot.
“That’s probably an at-bat I’m not going to forget for the rest of my life,” Ohtani said through an interpreter..
The Halos build a four-run lead with two runs in the second and one run each in the fourth and fifth inning. But Kris Davis of the A’s hit a three-run homer in the bottom of the fifth and Matt Olson added a four-bagger also.
That was enough for Angels’ starter Garrett Richards, who would complete his opening day performance with seven hits and four earned runs in five innings. He walked three batters and struck out four.
The Angels regained the lead in the top of the sixth on a solo home run by Albert Pujols to make it 5-4, but Oakland responded with one run each in the bottom of the seventh and 11th innings.
Boog Powell tripled in the 11th and scored on a single by Marcus Semien to give the Athletics a walk-off win.
On the bright side for the Angels, the team got three home runs on the day, as Kole Calhoun, Pujols and Zack Cozart each went yard. Not only that, the Angels outhit the A’s 13-12 and got three-hit outings from Cozart, Calhoun and Martin Maldonado.
“We had some leads,” Angels manager Mike Scioscia said. “We just couldn’t hold them.”
The Angels will get a second chance to get a first win on Friday when Tyler Skaggs makes the start for the Halos.