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As Ohtani exits early, Angels routed by Sox

MLB.com

ANAHEIM -- Shohei Ohtani vs. David Price was supposed to be an early marquee pitching matchup, one that could involve each going about seven innings -- like Price did in his first two starts and like Ohtani did on April 8, when he flirted with a perfect game.

Instead, both pitchers combined for just seven innings, as Ohtani left early with a blister and the Red Sox powered their way to a 10-1 win on Tuesday at Angel Stadium. Price threw 78 pitches over five innings, while Ohtani exited after the second.

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ANAHEIM -- Shohei Ohtani vs. David Price was supposed to be an early marquee pitching matchup, one that could involve each going about seven innings -- like Price did in his first two starts and like Ohtani did on April 8, when he flirted with a perfect game.

Instead, both pitchers combined for just seven innings, as Ohtani left early with a blister and the Red Sox powered their way to a 10-1 win on Tuesday at Angel Stadium. Price threw 78 pitches over five innings, while Ohtani exited after the second.

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The blister, which developed after Ohtani's previous start on April 8, appeared to hamper his ability to locate his offspeed pitches, allowing a dangerous Red Sox offense to pounce on his fastball. The two-way phenom gave up three runs on four hits and two walks in his first career loss.

"[The blister] definitely affected his command," Angels manager Mike Scioscia said.

Video: BOS@LAA: Ohtani, Scioscia discuss blister, early exit

The American League East-leading Red Sox are one of the first major tests of the season for the Angels. The two teams entered Tuesday leading MLB in several major offensive categories. Boston continued to rake, notching 15 hits, including six homers. Meanwhile, Los Angeles had just four hits, all singles.

"I knew [the Red Sox] were a really good team on a hot streak," Ohtani said through an interpreter. "I watched videos the last two days, and I saw why they were playing so well. And actually pitching against them, I felt why they had such a good record. It's something I need to get better at for next time, and keep on trying to learn more and get better."

Video: BOS@LAA: Ohtani strikes out Martinez in the 1st

Boston notched all three of its runs against Ohtani off the righty's four-seam fastball, which they jumped on when his splitter -- by far his best secondary pitch -- proved negligible. Ohtani threw 13 splitters, with only two yielding strikes -- both foul balls.

"My splitter, I didn't have good command of that, I threw it in the dirt a lot," Ohtani said. "My fastball, I didn't have a good feel on my fingertips, off the seams."

The Angels' bullpen faltered, too. Entering Tuesday with the second lowest ERA in the AL, their relievers gave up seven runs, including five homers.

Video: BOS@LAA: Pujols grounds an RBI single to left

The Angels' lone run came on an Albert Pujols RBI single, the 2,989th hit of his career. Pujols was ejected at the end of the fifth for arguing a called third strike. It was his ninth career ejection, and his fourth with the Angels.

Price threw five innings of one-run ball, allowing just three hits and striking out six. The Boston bullpen combined for four innings of scoreless relief.

SOUND SMART
This was the Angels' first Tuesday sellout since April 1, 2014 -- the second game of the regular season that year -- with a crowd of 43,567. It was also the second largest attendance since Angel Stadium was renovated in 1998.

Ohtani tied Tim Fortugno for the franchise record for most strikeouts through an Angels pitcher's first three career games with 19.

UP NEXT
Left-hander Tyler Skaggs (2-0, 1.69 ERA) will make his fourth start of the season Wednesday, as the Angels continue their three-game series against the Red Sox at 7:07 p.m. PT at Angel Stadium. Skaggs tossed 5 1/3 scoreless innings in his lone previous start against the Red Sox on July 31, 2016. Right-hander Rick Porcello (3-0, 1.83) will take the mound for Boston.

Avery Yang is a reporter for MLB.com.

Los Angeles Angels, Shohei Ohtani, Albert Pujols