LEADING OFF: Ohtani 2-way All-Star, Cubs sag, Dodgers soar

Sports

Los Angeles Angels’ Shohei Ohtani smiles after being intentionally walked during the sixth inning of a baseball game against the Baltimore Orioles Saturday, July 3, 2021, in Anaheim, Calif. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

A look at what’s happening around the majors today:

SHO-TIME

Shohei Ohtani is the first player selected to the All-Star Game as both a hitter and pitcher. The Los Angeles Angels’ two-way sensation was one of the American League pitchers picked by players, managers and coaches in balloting announced Sunday. Ohtani had already been elected by fans as the AL’s starting designated hitter for the July 13 showcase at Denver’s Coors Field. Ohtani is hitting .278 with a major league-leading 31 home runs and 67 RBIs. He is 3-1 with a 3.60 ERA and 83 strikeouts over 60 innings in 12 starts on the mound.

SKIDDING

The Cubs have lost nine straight games since their combined no-hitter June 24 against the Los Angeles Dodgers. That’s three shy of the longest losing streak by a team following a no-hitter, set after Brooklyn’s Dazzy Vance held Philadelphia hitless on Sept. 13, 1925.

Chicago begins a four-game series at Wrigley Field against the Phillies, with Zach Davies (5-5, 4.32 ERA) facing Matt Moore (0-1, 5.79).

SOARING

The Dodgers have won nine in a row since being no-hit, their longest winning streak in a season since they won nine in a row July 22 to Aug. 1, 2017. The defending World Series champions send Walker Buehler (8-1, 2.35 ERA) to the mound for a series opener at Miami against All-Star rookie Trevor Rogers (7-5, 2.14).

STAR ROLE

One night after their 11-game winning streak was snapped, the Milwaukee Brewers are in New York to play the Mets in the opener of a three-game set between NL division leaders. Milwaukee right-hander Brandon Woodruff (7-3, 1.87 ERA), picked Sunday for his second All-Star Game, pitches against rookie Tylor Megill (0-0, 4.82). Woodruff has won both career starts against the Mets.

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