Rumors: Dodgers ‘Biggest Threat’ to Angels in Shohei Ohtani Sweepstakes

Now that’s what we like to hear.

If you didn’t already know by now, Shohei Ohtani is entering unrestricted free agency in about nine or so months from now. When that happens — assuming he doesn’t sign an extension before then (he won’t) — one of the greatest bidding wars in sports history will commence.

Everyone from the Dodgers to the San Diego Padres to the San Francisco Giants to the New York Mets to the New York Yankees to the incumbent Angels will be all-in on convincing Ohtani to sign. Millions of dollars will be thrown around like its pennies, all in an effort to sign the greatest two-way player in MLB history.

It’s no secret the Dodgers have been especially quiet this winter, as they load up an offer for Ohtani next offseason. And this week, MLB insider Jon Heyman reported that they remain the “biggest threat” to land Ohtani.

“Five of his seven finalists five years ago were teams located on the West Coast, and none on the East Coast. And no surprise, the Dodgers, Giants and Padres will once again likely join the incumbent Angels in The Ohtani Derby. Of course, everyone assumes he’s gone from the Angels. Their best hope was if owner Arte Moreno sold to Warriors owner and interested party Joe Lacob, who has run his NBA payroll into Cohen territory and also shown a willingness to pay hundreds of millions in tax. But the Dodgers loom as the other biggest threat.”

There are a few interesting claims that Heyman makes here. First, he makes it sound like the Angels are pretty much out of the running for Ohtani. If that’s the case, that would be great news for the Dodgers, especially if Ohtani doesn’t want to move very far. There would be no closer option than going to the Dodgers (although the Padres are a close second).

Second, Heyman brings up an interesting point that Ohtani was very against going to the East Coast when he initially came to America in 2017. If that remains the case, the Dodgers will likely be in a bidding war with their division rivals for Ohtani — and having Steve Cohen’s checkbook with the Mets out of the picture would be nice.

Finally, and of course the most interesting claim for Dodgers fans, is that Heyman called them the biggest threat to sign Ohtani in the offseason. We don’t know if that’s from a source of if that’s his gut feeling, but either way, it bodes well for Dodger fans.

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