A few days before the trade deadline on August 1, the Los Angeles Angels decided not only to keep Shohei Ohtani (there had been endless trade rumors surrounding him at the time), but they also acquired Lucas Giolito, Reynaldo López, C.J. Cron, Randal Grichuk, and Dominic Leone.
In other words, they prepared to make a run at the postseason.
Unfortunately for them, they lost the first seven games they played immediately after the deadline.
It was like a slap in the face by destiny for a team that dreams to give Ohtani at least a glimpse of postseason baseball before he hits free agency.
After that ugly seven-game losing streak, the Angels have won two in a row and find themselves dreaming.
Ohtani himself commented on the organization’s chances.
“Shohei Ohtani, asked about the team’s playoff chances: ‘I know it’s not extremely high right now. But there’s obviously a possibility there. We’re trying our best every game, we’re trying to get some wins. And we’ve got 2 in a row right now,'” Angels insider Sam Blum tweeted, quoting the Japanese star.
Shohei Ohtani, asked about the team's playoff chances:
"I know it's not extremely high right now. But there's obviously a possibility there. We're trying our best every game, we're trying to get some wins. And we've got 2 in a row right now."
— Sam Blum (@SamBlum3) August 10, 2023
Ohtani, fresh off throwing six innings of one-run ball on Wednesday, knows that it won’t be easy to advance to the playoffs, but he has to try while there is a chance.
As of Thursday afternoon, the Angels are 58-58 and 10.5 games behind the Texas Rangers in the AL West.
They are, however, 6.5 games behind the last Wild Card spot in the American League.
The problem is that there are three teams between the Angels and that spot.
There is still some time, though, and if Mike Trout manages to make a return from his injury relatively soon, there might be a chance for Los Angeles.NEXT: Shohei Ohtani Stands Alone With New MLB Record