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Shohei Ohtani and Max Scherzer Receive MLBPA Honors

LOS ANGELES (CBSLA) - Two of Los Angeles' most popular athletes, Shohei Ohtani and Max Scherzer, were announced as Player's Choice Award winners by the Major League Baseball Players Association (MLBPA) on Thursday.

Ohtani was voted by his peers as the American League Outstanding Player and the MLB Player of the Year, while Scherzer was awarded the National League Outstanding Pitcher award.

MLB commissioner Rob Manfred presented Ohtani with the Commissioner's Historic Achievement Award on Tuesday prior to Game 1 of the World Series in Houston. Ohtani became just the 16th player in MLB history to receive the award after his historic two-way season.

Los Angeles Angels v Seattle Mariners
(Photo by Steph Chambers/Getty Images)

Ohtani posted a .257 batting average while crushing 46 home runs (3rd most in the MLB) and driving in 100 runs. In addition to his incredible season at the plate, Ohtani was arguably just as dominant on the mound finishing with a 9-2 record with 156 strikeouts and a 3.18 ERA.

READ MORE: MLB Honors Shohei Ohtani With Commissioner's Historic Achievement Award

Ohtani became the first player in MLB history to hit for at least 30 home runs with at least 30 strikeouts on the mound in a season. He's one of only five players with at least 45 home runs, 100 RBIs and 25 stolen bases in a single season.

Despite the historic single season achievements, the Angels finished (77-85) failing to reach the postseason for the seventh consecutive season since being swept by the Kansas City Royals in the American League Division Series in 2014.

Meanwhile, Scherzer was acquired by the Dodgers in a trade with the Washington Nationals just before the trade deadline to boost a starting rotation looking to make another deep postseason run after winning the 2020 World Series.

Championship Series - Los Angeles Dodgers v Atlanta Braves - Game Two
(Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)

Scherzer finished the season 15-4 with an ERA of just 2.46 in 30 starts for the Nationals and the Dodgers. Scherzer was 7-0 with a 1.98 ERA in 11 starts with the Boys in Blue during the regular season. The Dodgers first loss in a Scherzer start didn't come until a Game 3 of the National League Division Series against the San Francisco Giants.

This is the 3-time Cy Young Award winner's third time winning the award after receiving the American League Outstanding Pitcher award in 2013 with the Detroit Tigers and the National League Outstanding Pitcher award in 2017 with the Nationals.

Despite finishing the season (106-56) the Dodgers had to beat the St. Louis Cardinals in a 1-game wild card series to secure their spot in the 2021 postseason. After a thrilling five-game series against the Giants, who won a franchise record 107 games in the regular season, the Dodgers advanced to face the Atlanta Braves in a rematch of last year's National League Championship Series.

Scherzer struggled with arm fatigue throughout the postseason and was scratched from his start in Game 6 of the NLCS in what would end up being the Dodgers' final game of the season.

Both the Angels and the Dodgers head into the offseason with heavy pressure to improve their respective rosters around their superstar pitchers in order to compete in the postseason next year.

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