After a day of speculation, consternation, corrections and retractions, Shohei Ohtani remains a free agent. What’s the latest on the two-way superstar?
Here are some Frequently Asked Questions that have emerged since Dodgers Nation reported Ohtani has chosen to sign with the Toronto Blue Jays.
What’s going on? Has Ohtani decided or hasn’t he?
According to multiple sources who spoke with Dodgers Nation on Friday, Ohtani’s decision is still in. The Dodgers do not expect to sign him. The Toronto Blue Jays do.
Wait, why isn’t Ohtani to Toronto a done deal?
The time between a free agent making his decision and the time his contract becomes official is not instantaneous. After agreeing to terms, passing a physical, putting pen to paper, submitting the contract to MLB, and having the contract approved by the league, only then does a contract between a player and a team become official. That process hasn’t played out with Ohtani. It can’t begin, of course, until he officially decides on a team.
What’s the Ohtani, private jet situation?
The most compelling sideshow in Friday’s saga was a report from Jon Morosi of MLB Network that Ohtani was en route to Toronto. Others believed they had identified the exact flight whisking him out of Southern California. Morosi later retracted his report after it was revealed Ohtani had never left. (The celebrity passenger on board the flight was “Shark Tank” star Robert Herjavec, who had fun with the snafu on his Instagram account.) A T-shirt commemorating the flight is available now, proving the internet remains undefeated.
So why are there so many conflicting reports regarding Ohtani?
It’s easy to forget now, but Ohtani’s first foray into major league free agency six years ago was closely guarded as well. His media availability as an Angel was more limited than perhaps any player’s in Major League Baseball. (Ohtani has not given an interview since August, despite winning the American League MVP award in the meantime.) His agency, CAA, requested privacy from teams as Ohtani’s latest free-agent process played out. Leaks have been few and far between ever since, so it’s possible the principals are motivated to keep Ohtani’s decision a mystery as long as possible.
Dodgers Nation believes its sources are correct. Some details of our initial story have been verified independently by additional sources since it first published. We can’t comment on the veracity of anyone else’s sources; that’s not our job. We haven’t been able to confirm precisely when Ohtani will announce his decision – initially we reported it would be no earlier than Friday – but we anticipate him and the Blue Jays revealing their agreement at some point.
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