ANAHEIM, Calif. — Back in the day, Vladimir Guerrero Jr. romped around Angel Stadium like he owned the place. He’d hang out and take rips in the batting cage with his Hall of Fame father, play all over the field, goof around with Kendrys Morales and Erick Aybar in the clubhouse.
“I pretty much grew up here,” he told a throng of assembled media in the visitors’ dugout before batting practice on Thursday. “Coming back now as a big-leaguer every year is pretty cool.”
Even cooler for Guerrero and the Toronto Blue Jays was getting the best of Shohei Ohtani and the Los Angeles Angels in a 6-3 victory. Facing the 2021 American League MVP, the runner-up for the honour flew out 388 feet in the first, took a third strike 97 m.p.h. heater at the knees in the third and sent his ninth homer of the season off the left-field foul pole in the sixth.
That solo shot brought home the last of five runs off Ohtani, who still struck out 10 in his six frames of work but took damage throughout. George Springer opened the scoring with a leadoff homer in the first before a Santiago Espinal RBI single and Bo Bichette two-run double in the third offered Hyun Jin Ryu a nice bit of breathing room.
It was only the second time in eight starts Ohtani has allowed more than two runs while the six hits against…