Shohei Ohtani went 1-for-4 in batting second for the first time in the majors, taking his hitting streak to four games despite the Los Angeles Angels' 5-3 loss to the Houston Astros on Tuesday.
Designated hitter Ohtani struck out and popped out in his first two at-bats before singling in the fifth for his only hit of the day against the reigning World Series champions at Angel Stadium.
"I wanted to create opportunities for us," Ohtani said of being slotted into the two hole with Gerrit Cole starting for the Astros. "I knew (Cole) was an excellent pitcher, but I found out firsthand why. It's not easy figuring him out."
The 23-year-old Ohtani's next start is set for Sunday against the Tampa Bay Rays. He will likely start against the New York Yankees' Masahiro Tanaka in the finale of a three-game series on May 27.
(Shohei Ohtani hit safely in his fourth straight game Tuesday.)
Yu Darvish came off the 10-day disabled list and made his first start in two weeks Tuesday, but he was not involved in the decision in the Chicago Cubs' 3-2 victory over the Atlanta Braves.
Darvish, who was out with the flu, was activated in time to start the second game of a four-game road series at SunTrust Park, which includes one rainout makeup.
He pitched three scoreless innings before he allowed a solo homer to Ender Inciarte in the fourth, the only run he gave up in four innings of work. He yielded three hits and two walks while striking out five of 16 batters he faced.
"I started getting cramps (in my right calf)," said Darvish. "I told (manager Joe Maddon after the fourth inning) in case he didn't have anyone ready in the bullpen, and he told me to get off the mound. I should've waited another inning to tell him."
It was Darvish's first start since May 2, when he was tagged with his third loss of the season. The Japanese right-hander is still winless after six starts.
At Nationals Park, the game between the Yankees and the Washington Nationals was suspended due to rain in the middle of the sixth inning with the score tied 3-3.
The teams are scheduled to resume play Wednesday before the finale of the two-game interleague series.
Tanaka started for the Yankees and allowed three runs and four hits, including a first-inning solo shot to Anthony Rendon. He struck out two in a 72-pitch effort.
"It wasn't an impressive outing. I have to change something, or I'll get lost in a downward spiral," Tanaka said.
The Nationals built a 3-0 lead against Tanaka but New York rallied to tie the game in the top of the fifth. The teams waited for more than an hour before the game was called.