Los Angeles Angels (2023)
The Angels defeated the Detroit Tigers in both halves of a double header on Thursday night. They're considered long shots to make the playoffs, but these victories brought the Angels to five games over .500 and there's still enough time for the team to finish the season strong in their chase for a wild card spot. However, that wasn't the story of Thursday night's double header.
The story was Shohei Ohtani, who shut out the Tigers by pitching a complete game one-hitter in the first game of the double header, and he propelled the Angels offense by going 2-3 with two home runs in the second game. He is now 9-5 as a pitcher, and after going 2-4 with a home run against the Blue Jays last night, Ohtani brought his batting average over .300 and he leads all of baseball with 39 home runs.
Even if Shohei Ohtani didn't play another game for the rest of the season, what he has already done makes him the overwhelming favorite to win the 2023 AL MVP. He's hitting home runs at a pace that may break the legitimate single season home run record of 62 currently held by Aaron Judge while simultaneously serving as the ace of his rotation and one of the best pitchers in baseball.
So far, this has been the greatest season ever played by a professional ballplayer. Shohei Ohtani in 2023 has been greater than Babe Ruth... greater than Hank Aaron... greater than Cy Young... greater than Nolan Ryan... definitely greater than any of the steroid clowns whose statistics carry no weight or legitimacy whatsoever. I don't care who you name or what they did, the best season of anyone else is literally half the player that Shohei Ohtani is in 2023.