Shohei Ohtani creates history for most number of home runs than any other Japanese-born MLB player

 Shohei Ohtani has done a lot to raise the bar in his career, changing what we even think of as possible in baseball. Now, he’s set the new standard for Japanese slugging excellence in MLB.

Facing Mets right-hander Adrian Houser in the third inning of the Dodgers’ 10-0 win on Sunday, Ohtani connected with an 0-1 slider left over the heart of the plate for his 176th career homer, breaking a tie with Hideki Matsui for most by a Japanese-born Major Leaguer. The blast was an absolute no-doubter, a liner with an exit velocity of 110 mph that traveled a Statcast-projected 423 feet into Dodger Stadium’s Right Field Pavilion.

Shohei Ohtani creates history for most number of home runs than any other  Japanese-born MLB player

“I’m relieved and happy,” Ohtani said through interpreter Will Ireton. “I took a while to get this point since my last homer, so just honestly, happy, relieved.”

It took seven games between Ohtani tying Matsui on April 13 and when he broke the record. He was plenty productive in that span, though, going 11-for-29 with three doubles and six walks. Ohtani reached twice more after Sunday’s homer, adding a single that deflected off Houser’s left foot in the fifth, then working a walk in the sixth before being lifted for a pinch-hitter in the eighth.

• Glasnow comes up ‘huge’ when Dodgers need it

Shohei Ohtani makes MLB history with 176th home run, the most of any  Japanese-born player

“His presence, his ability as a player, he’s just a great player,” Matsui said of Ohtani through an interpreter. “The numbers on my end are just not comparable. … I’m sure many of the fans have their expectations as far as what he may do, what he may accomplish. As far as myself, my hope is just that he stays healthy.”

Dodgers' Shohei Ohtani passes Hideki Matsui for most MLB homers by a  Japanese-born player | AP News

Ohtani’s top 10 home runs in MLB

Now that Ohtani holds sole possession of the Japanese-born MLB homer mark, the question becomes just how many more homers he’ll add. The 29-year-old is in the first year of his record-shattering 10-year, $700 million deal, and his 2024 is off to a blistering start.

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