“To have someone next to you…” Ohtani’s marriage is a godsend, interpreter betrayal, and there was also a secret training to revive

April 10, 2024 | by

Shohei Ohtani (30, Los Angeles Dodgers), who had been shaken by the betrayal of an interpreter for 12 years, has come to life. Although he was stabbed in the back by someone he trusted, his wife Mamiko Tanaka (28) was able to overcome the shock quickly.

Ohtani had a meeting with reporters ahead of the Minnesota Twins match at Minneapolis Target Field in Minnesota on the 9th (Korea time). Ohtani, who refrained from interviewing before the game after interpreter Mizuhara Ifei was fired for illegal sports gambling and theft during the MLB World Tour Seoul Series from the 20th to the 21st of last month, faced reporters for the first time in a long time.

Unlike Su-hoon’s interview after the game, he talked with reporters from the U.S. and Japan on various topics for 14 minutes. Questions were raised about the correlation between pitch clocks, which have recently emerged as a league issue, and the increase in pitcher injuries, and whether the absence of Mizuhara, who has always been by his side on and off the ground, will affect his performance.

According to local media, including Japan’s Full Count, Ohtani said, “It’s only been a few weeks. I don’t do anything special except stay at the hotel or at home. Now I come to the ballpark to practice on my own. I feel the support from my teammates, and I feel the support from the coaches and the front office. I am very grateful for this.”

What happened outside the stadium can make it difficult for me to concentrate on baseball, but I don’t think so when I play baseball. Basically, the skills that I have achieved so far do not change. It is my job to believe that and show 100 percent on the ground. Whatever happens outside the stadium, it does not change.”

The presence of his wife Tanaka and his dog Decofin is also a great strength for Ohtani to endure. On Feb. 29, Ohtani, who unveiled his wife Tanaka, a former basketball player, before flying to Korea ahead of the Seoul Series after making a surprise announcement, said about his post-wedding life, “The basic rhythm of life has not changed, but many things have happened over the past few weeks. Whether someone is next to him or not seems very different. In that sense, I feel fortunate to have my wife by my side.” 핑크알바

If the Mizuhara incident had taken place while not married, Ohtani would have had difficulty keeping his mind on his own. While his betrayal was huge, he was involved in illegal sports gambling, and he had to hold an explanatory press conference after being investigated. It was probably because it was his first year as a Dodgers transfer, but he could have had a significant impact on his performance. His wife firmly supported Ohtani during those difficult times. The timing of his marriage was also a godsend for Ohtani.

Ohtani struggled in the early days of the season, not necessarily because of the Mizuraha incident. He had no home runs in his first eight games, posting a batting average of 242 percent (eight hits in 33 at-bats) with a three-run OPS of .631. However, after reporting his first home run in the game against the San Francisco Giants on April 4, he had multi hits in five consecutive games through the game against Minnesota on April 9, showing a sharp rebound in batting average of .500 (11 hits in 22 at-bats) with three homers and five RBIs with an OPS of 1.704. He has improved his performance quickly with a batting average of .345 percent (19 hits in 55 at-bats) and an OPS of 1.056.

“After my first home run came out, I had more leeway at bat. There is a big difference between going into the batter’s box mentally relaxed and not,” Ohtani said, revealing his unique batting practice method. After finishing his two at-bats against the Chicago Cubs on the 8th, he practiced swinging with a short, blunt cricket-shaped bat when the rain stopped in the fourth inning. The handle is a unique equipment that looks like a baseball bat, and was suggested by Dodgers batting coach Robert Van Scoyot.

Coincidentally, from the next batter’s box to Saturday, Ohtani hit all five hits in two games with long hits (three doubles, one triple, and one home run). “The cricket bat has two sides, so it is good for practice. It has resulted in quite good results, so I will continue to do so,” Ohtani said. Dodgers manager Dave Roberts said, “We learn more and more every day. Ohtani is getting more comfortable every day. He laughs a lot and asks a lot of questions,” adding that Ohtani is adjusting well to his team after overcoming the challenge.


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