Ohtani has no regrets hitting through year, delaying surgery

TEMPE, Ariz. (AP) — Shohei Ohtani wouldn't change how he handled his elbow injury late last year, continuing to hit for the Angels until season's end even if it meant delaying reconstructive surgery and his ability to pitch again until 2020.

The reigning AL Rookie of the Year is recovering from an Oct. 1 Tommy John surgery with the hope he will be able to bat in the Los Angeles lineup as early as May if all stays on schedule.

Ohtani says he has "no regrets" about last year.

At Tempe Diablo Stadium, the scene Wednesday was a far cry from a year ago when Ohtani showed up at spring training with fanfare and faced a huge media contingent following his every move. For now, the two-way star isn't even on the field as he works out inside.

The 24-year-old Ohtani spent time back home in Japan this offseason working through his rehabilitation, which right now includes dry swings only in terms of his hitting preparation.

He went 4-2 with a 3.31 ERA in 10 starts as a pitcher. He played 104 games overall as a rookie, hitting .285 with 22 homers and 61 RBIs.

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