Shohei Ohtani cleared to begin throwing program

Angels pinch hitter Shohei Ohtani sprints for third base during a game at Dodger Stadium on July 13.
(Kent Nishimura / Los Angeles Times)

Shohei Ohtani’s return from a grade 2 sprain of his right ulnar collateral ligament continued Thursday when he was medically cleared to begin a throwing program.

The rookie pitched most recently on June 6 and was diagnosed with the injury the next day.

Though there is a chance he could pitch again for the Angels this season, Ohtani, in the best-case scenario, remains several weeks away.


Until he can start really testing the condition of his arm, it will be unclear when he might resume pitching.

With only 10 weeks left in the regular season, the Angels have plenty of time to answer questions regarding Ohtani’s availability before the start of next spring training.

His long-term health and development is more of the team’s concern today than getting him back in the rotation as soon as possible.

Ohtani received injections of platelet-rich plasma and stem cells June 7 and was cleared by Dr. Steve Yoon to resume swinging a bat three weeks later. He rejoined the Angels as a designated hitter July 3.

Yoon’s latest re-evaluation showed additional healing of the ligament as the Angels hope Ohtani can avoid surgery.