Los Angeles Angels superstar Shohei Ohtani is set to be one of the biggest free agents baseball has ever seen this winter, and there should be no shortage of teams interested in him and trying to roll out the red carpet for him.
On Tuesday night at the Major League Baseball All-Star Game, Seattle Mariners fans started rolling out that red carpet by spending the entirety of his first two at-bats chanting "Come to Seattle."
We think people in Seattle might want Shohei Ohtani to come play baseball here pic.twitter.com/7ImhzMXGmG— Seattle Sports (@SeattleSports) July 12, 2023
Baseball has never seen a player like Ohtani with his ability to dominate as a hitter and starting pitcher. He leads the majors in home runs (32) and OPS (1.050) at the All-Star break while also being one of the best starting pitchers in the American League.
He already has one MVP award and was a runner-up a year ago to New York Yankees outfielder Aaron Judge.
He figures to be in the top two again this season, and he should be considered the odds-on favorite to win it.
But with the Angels never making the playoffs during his career, and not much progress being made on contract negotiations, he is expected to hit the open market this offseason. The Los Angeles Dodgers, New York Yankees, New York Mets, Chicago Cubs and maybe the Boston Red Sox could all be considered possibilities.
Early estimates on what he might get on a new deal range somewhere between the $400M and $500M range on a free-agent contract.
There is still some question as to whether or not the Angels could trade him before the trade deadline, but owner Arte Moreno seems to have no motivation to do that given how much of a draw Ohtani is for the Angels.