NEW YORK (AP) — Shohei Ohtani has combined his exceptional performance on the field with a financial record, earning $700 million for a 30-mile move to the Los Angeles Dodgers.
His agent, Nez Balelo, issued a news release at noon Saturday announcing the 10-year deal, ending months of speculation that began before Ohtani became a free agent on Nov. 2. In recent days, the media and fans have followed the movements of private jets. The allegations are like detectives trying to figure out the two-time AL MVP’s motives with the Angels.
“It’s a unique, historic contract for a unique, historic player,” Paleo said. “He is excited to begin this partnership and has structured his agreement to reflect a true commitment from both parties to long-term success.”
Ohtani’s total was 64% higher than baseball’s previous record, a $426.5 million, 12-year contract for Angels outfielder Mike Trout It started in 2019.
His average salary of $70 million is 62% higher than the previous high of $43,333,333 shared by pitchers. Max Scherzer And Justin Verlander With the deals they made with the New York Mets. Ohtani’s average salary is nearly double the roughly $42.3 million he earned with the Angels. That surpasses the entire payroll of Baltimore and Oakland this year.
His contract includes unprecedented deferred payments that will reduce the amount counted against the Dodgers’ luxury tax payroll, a person familiar with the deal told The Associated Press. The person spoke on condition of anonymity because the details have not been released.
“He structured his deal to reflect a real commitment from both sides to long-term success,” Paleo said. “Shohei and I want to thank all the companies that have reached out to us for their interest and respect, and especially the wonderful people we’ve gotten to know better as this process unfolds.”
It is possibly the biggest contract in the history of the sport, reaching a peak believed to have been set by football stars Lionel Messi and Kylian Mbappe.
There was no immediate comment by the Dodgers. Ohtani has not spoken to the media since August 9.
“I apologize for taking so long to come to a conclusion,” Ohtani said in an English-language statement on Instagram.
“And to all Dodgers fans, I promise I will always do what’s best for the team and always give my all to be the best version of myself,” he continued. “Until the last day of my playing career, I want to continue to improve not only for the Dodgers, but for the world of baseball.”
Ohtani joins a lineup that includes the 2018 AL MVP Mookie Bets and the 2020 NL MVP Freddie Freeman. The The Dodgers won the NL West This year marks the 10th time in 11 seasons that they have done so Destroyed by Arizona Division Series in October.
Los Angeles begins its 2024 season in Seoul, South KoreaMarch 20-21 against San Diego.
Ohtani’s decision came six years and one day later First agreed to his contract with the Angels.
Ohtani has redefined modern baseball since choosing the Angels as his first major league team. No one has come close to his accomplishments at the plate and on the mound, becoming one of the majors’ elite players in both roles when healthy. Along the way, he has become one of the most marketable athletes in the world when it comes to ticket sales, TV ratings and sponsorship income.
He was the unanimous AL MVP 2021 And 2023 – He took second place 2022 – won this year despite injuring his elbow in late August and an oblique muscle in early September.
Before his 30th birthday on July 5, he has a .274 average with 171 homers, 437 RBIs and 86 stolen bases with a 39-19 record with a 3.01 ERA and 608 strikeouts in 481 2/3 innings. Ohtani has a Wins Above Replacement (WAR) of 34.7 for Baseball Reference.
The Halos were perennial in the AL standings and in the Los Angeles market, but partially won Ohtani’s services in late 2017, promising him the freedom to practice and play as he pleased. Ohtani immediately dazzled the entire game in 2018, batting .285 as a designated hitter with 22 homers and 61 RBIs and going 4-2 with a 3.31 ERA and 63 strikeouts.
Ohtani won 2018 AL Rookie of the Year Award Despite making one pitching appearance since early June due to an elbow ligament injury that required Tommy John surgery following the season. Ohtani made just two mound appearances over the next two years while continuing to play as the Angels DH.
When his arm was finally healthy in 2021, Ohtani put together a season for the ages.
He won the AL MVP award with 46 homers and 100 RBIs, going 9-2 with a 3.18 ERA. He improved as a pitcher in 2022, going 15-9 with a 2.33 ERA and 1.01 WHIP in 95 innings, but finished behind Aaron Judge in MVP voting after the Yankees star hit an AL-record 62 homers.
After winning the MVP award at the World Baseball Classic last March, leading Japan to victory – He struck out Trout to end the match – Ohtani maintained his two-way greatness this year, hitting a career-high 44 homers with a 1.066 OPS. On August 23, he again tore his elbow ligament. Because of that, he did not bat after September 3 Filtered right slanted.
Along with his elbow injuries, Ohtani’s overwhelming success has come with another significant hitch: He’s never made the playoffs or played on a winning team in the majors. Owner Arte Moreno’s Angels have never won more than 80 games or finished third in the AL West with Trout. Three-time AL MVPAnd perpetually disappointing supporting players.
Ohtani earned $42,269,259 in his six seasons with the Angels. After receiving a $2,315,000 signing bonus with his initial contract, he had salaries of $545,000, $650,000, $259,259 (for the pandemic-shortened 2020 season), $3 million, $5.5 million and $30 million.
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