Pujols, Ohtani make progress from season-ending surgeries

LAS VEGAS (AP) — Angels slugger Albert Pujols has been cleared to do extensive upper body work and also has begun low-impact lower body exercises as he recovers from surgery on his left knee and right elbow.

Pujols isn’t yet ready to swing a bat but continues to progress as he works with a strength coach, general manager Billy Eppler said. The first baseman and designated hitter had season-ending knee surgery in August followed by the elbow procedure in September to remove bone spurs.

Pujols, who turns 39 next month, batted .245 with 19 homers and 64 RBIs playing 117 games in his 18th season. He has 633 career home runs.

Two-way star Shohei Ohtani is back home in Japan continuing his rehabilitation from Tommy John surgery Oct. 1. The AL Rookie of the Year’s range of motion “is in very good shape,” according to Eppler, and he has full extension and flexion of the right arm.

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Ohtani went 4-2 with a 3.31 ERA in 10 starts as a pitcher. He played 104 games overall as a rookie, hitting .285 with 22 homers and 61 RBIs.

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