Sources out of Los Angeles are saying Shohei Ohtani has chosen to sign with the Toronto Blue Jays

Photo credit:Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports
Zach Laing
2 months ago
Shohei Ohtani is reportedly set to sign with the Toronto Blue Jays, sources told Dodgers Nation, a Los Angeles-based website unaffiliated with BlueJaysNation.
Their writer, JP Hoornstra, a member of the Baseball Writers’ Associaton of America, said a formal announcement is expected “as early as tonight.” The deal, he added, is expected to shatter the 12-year, $462.5m deal Ohtani’s former teammate, Mike Trout, signed with the LA Angels.
Speculation continued to boil Friday as a private jet departed from Anaheim and headed to Toronto, with thousands watching the plane travel on flight trackers.
Despite this report, others surfaced shortly after that from Sportsnet’s Ben Nicholson-Smith and Shi Davidi and another from ESPN’s Alden Gonzalez, who said a decision hadn’t been made. MLB Trade Rumors, a reputable baseball news aggregation website, also cited Hoornstra’s report.
Despite the pushback, news may have leaked through the cracks in Los Angeles. Suppose Ohtani intends to sign with the Jays. In that case, the Dodgers would no longer need to abide by requests from Ohtani’s camp for privacy regarding potential leaks around the news, and would have nothing to lose by leaking information of the superstar’s plan to sign in Toronto.
In Hoornstra’s report, he cited the key to the Blue Jays’ pitch was that the team and Ohtani can command the attention of an entire nation.
Beyond that, he added, citing a source, that Rogers views Ohtani as a corporate investment “whose value transcends his impact on the field.”
The Toronto Sun’s Steve Simmons reported Thursday that Rogers’ “wildly expensive pursuit of Shohei Ohtani is corporately planned by Rogers to coincide with the end of its 12-year, money-hemorrhaging deal with the National Hockey League.”
“Rogers is seeking to turn itself from the hockey network — which has been an enormous drain on the company’s economics — into a Blue Jays first network that would include a team challenging for the World Series, centred around the brilliance of Ohtani, with Rogers Sportsnet, the network, reducing costs and increasing revenue all at the same time,” Simmons report continued.

Zach Laing is the Nation Network’s news director and senior columnist. He can be followed on Twitter at @zjlaing, or reached by email at zach@thenationnetwork.com.


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