Shohei Ohtani donates $150K from home run derby to 30 Angels trainers and clubhouse staff
[July 17, 2021: IANS]
Japanese two-way star Shohei Ohtani on Friday donated his prize money from the home run derby to members of the Los Angeles Angels staff, while also being a huge hit with fans purchasing All-Star Game merchandise.
The first Japanese in Major League Baseball's home run derby, Ohtani received $150,000 despite going out in the first round on Monday. According to the Orange County Register, Ohtani distributed those earnings to 30 individual trainers, clubhouse workers and media relations people.
Pete Alonso of the New York Mets, the defending champion, won the $1 million first prize in the eight-player competition, while the runner-up earned $500,000.
Due to the coronavirus pandemic, a number of Angels staffers were furloughed in 2020, while Ohtani in February agreed a two-year deal worth a total of $8.5 million.
But his impact extended beyond those at Angel Stadium, where his team resumed the regular season with a game in a 6-5 loss to the Seattle Mariners.
MLB announced that Ohtani, the first player to start the All-Star Game at two positions, pitcher and designated hitter, was a hit at the cash register, with his merchandise accounting for 28 percent of all All-Star merchandise revenue.
Ohtani entered Friday's game against the Mariners leading both leagues in home runs with 33. He failed to add to that total on Friday, going 1-for-5 with a two-run single.
His RBI single in the bottom of the ninth made it a one-run game, but the game ended with him on third base, representing the potential tying run.
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