‘Otani to the Dodgers’ is what 71% of ML GMs think, and 3 good reasons why
November 11, 2023 | by bookmeforphotographers.com
The Major League Baseball (MLB) general managers’ meetings are an important read on the direction of the offseason, and 71% of them had the same idea. The Los Angeles Dodgers are the destination for Shohei Ohtani, 29, who could become the biggest free agent in baseball history.
MLB.com, the official website of MLB, summarized the articles on Ohtani’s future on Nov. 11, pointing to the most recent one, written by John Heyman for the New York Post.
“There is a ‘consensus’ that the Dodgers are the favorite team for the Idoru superstar,” Hayman wrote, offering three reasons why, according to the media outlet. It’s a nod to why the majority of decision-makers at the general managers’ meetings saw Ohtani heading to the Dodgers.
Heyman first pointed to the Dodgers’ payroll flexibility. “The Dodgers’ Opening Day payroll was about $223 million in 2023 ($281 million in 2002), but they stuck to one-year and minor league deals last offseason and now have a payroll of only about $128 million,” Heyman said.
ESPN on Tuesday ranked Ohtani No. 1 overall in its projected contract sizes for this year’s free agents. It predicted that he would sign the largest contract in history, worth 10 years and $502 million (686.6 billion won).
The Dodgers have been focusing on becoming more financially efficient, including signing Clayton Kershaw to a one-year deal. As such, the prospect of signing Ohtani to a massive contract was seen by some as a step in the wrong direction, but Heyman saw it as a way to make the deal more likely.
“The Dodgers’ financial situation leaves them with room to sign Ohtani and address other needs, such as their rotation,” the outlet explained.
Another is that the Dodgers continue to be a perennial contender. Heyman pointed out that Ohtani has never made it to fall ball in his MLB career. He emphasized that the Dodgers have won 10 Division Series titles, three World Series appearances, and one pennant in the last 11 years. “If Ohtani wants to win, it would be hard to find a better environment than the Dodgers,” the outlet explained.
Indeed, Ohtani has made no secret of his dreams of winning a championship and playing fall ball. This is one of the big reasons why experts believe he will leave the Angels.
Finally, there’s geography. It’s no secret that Ohtani, who has only worn an Angels uniform since coming to the United States, prefers to stay in the Southern California area. Not many teams can say the same. The Angels are joined by the Dodgers, San Francisco Giants, San Diego Padres, and Seattle Mariners.
However, it’s hard to think of a team that could afford to sign Ohtani other than the Dodgers. That’s why the Dodgers are labeled as the most likely destination for Ohtani.
“Ohtani spent the last six seasons with the Angels, who are about 31 miles (50 kilometers) south of Dodger Stadium,” the outlet said, adding that while Los Angeles is a bigger city than Anaheim, a move from the Angels to the Dodgers wouldn’t be too much of a geographical change for the player.
Ohtani, who was touted by baseball fans around the world as a dual-purpose player who could hit and pitch, was unable to successfully do both in his first few seasons in the big leagues due to injuries. But in 2021, he batted .257 with 46 home runs, 100 RBIs, 103 runs scored, and 26 stolen bases to go along with a .964 OPS (on-base plus slugging percentage) as a hitter and a 9-2 record with 156 strikeouts and a 3.18 ERA in 130 1/3 innings over 23 games as a pitcher, earning unanimous American League (AL) Most Valuable Player (MVP) honors.
After excelling last season by focusing more on his pitching and less on his hitting, this season has been an evolution. Despite a season-ending injury that forced him to miss time at both ends of the plate, he showed off his improved skills.
On the mound, he started 23 games and went 10-5 with a 3.14 ERA in 132 innings pitched and 167 strikeouts, matching the 10 wins he didn’t get two years ago, but as a hitter, he was jaw-dropping with a .302 batting average, 44 home runs, 95 RBI, 102 runs scored and a 1.066 OPS. Ohtani, who won the AL Designated Hitter Silver Slugger Award on Oct. 10, will be looking for his second unanimous AL MVP award. 캡틴토토 주소
A season-ending elbow injury landed him on the operating table and will keep him out of the game for at least next season. Nevertheless, Ohtani’s value has not subsided. With that in mind, the Dodgers appear to be the favorite to land him, as they are the only team that can afford a big contract.