It’s going to take more than just heaps of cash to sign Japanese superstar Shohei Ohtani.
Ohtani, who has hit and pitched at a high level for the Nippon Ham Fighters in Japan’s highest professional baseball league, is one of the most desirable free agents this offseason. And beginning Dec. 1, teams will be able to pay the $20 million posting fee to try to sign the player.
Ohtani on Friday sent a memo to all 30 Major League Baseball teams asking them to answer a slew of different questions, according to the Associated Press. Ohtani, however, made no mention of finances.
Among some of the questions asked reportedly include how Ohtani would be used by a team, the resources available for the 23-year-old’s cultural assimilation into the city he would be playing in and why the team is even a good choice for him to sign with.
The questions underscore that while money certainly will play a role in signing Ohtani, it won’t be the only factor for the dual-threat, who wants to continue to play both ways in the MLB.
Teams likely will pull out all the stops to paint the best possible photo of their organization for the potential to win Ohtani’s services, and for good reason. In 2017, he hit .332 over 65 games. He’s also posted a 2.52 ERA over his 543 career innings.
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