Dodgers Team News

Shohei Ohtani, Teoscar Hernández Have Become Dodgers’ Unlikely Odd Couple

The friendship between outfielder Teoscar Hernández and designated hitter Shohei Ohtani was introduced to Los Angeles Dodgers fans during spring training. The two sought out the other in a clubhouse full of holdovers. Only seven current Dodgers are in their first year with the organization.

Their friendship isn’t about fluency, it’s about connection.

“We’re the new guys,” Hernández said in an interview with Stephanie Apstein of Sports Illustrated.

The two can communicate with each other without Ohtani’s interpreter Will Ireton forcing them to use English despite their eagerness to learn the other’s native language.

“He understands a lot of English and I understand a lot of English,” Hernández says. “But sometimes I say something and he don’t get it right away, so I have to explain it the way that I know, but I don’t know if he [gets it]. But I think that’s part of our job, to get to know each other, to help each other, and just to learn. We learn together a language that is not his language or mine.”

They met while playing for the American League All-Star team in 2021 and made a point to greet the other before competing against each other. Last April, Ohtani hit Hernández with a pitch and apologized dramatically. When Hernández signed with the Dodgers, Ohtani sent him a direct message on Instagram welcoming him to the team.

They have been there for each other, bringing smiles to faces in the dugout and the fans. It’s a unique bond; all that matters is that it works, and both are having incredible starts to their seasons.

Photo Credit: Jason Parkhurst-USA TODAY Sports

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Maren Angus

Maren Angus-Coombs was born in Los Angeles and raised in Nashville, Tenn. She is a graduate of Middle Tennessee State University and has been a sports writer since 2008. Despite being raised in the South, her sports obsession has always been in Los Angeles. She is currently a staff writer for Dodgers Nation and the LA Sports Report Network.

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