Shohei Ohtani’s contract expectations should be out of this world

The Los Angeles Angels want to pay Shohei Ohtani big money. How much remains to be seen, but Robert Murray anticipates an astronomical offer.

Ohtani could reset the market itself. We’ve never seen a player quite like him in modern baseball. A player who can pitch at an All-Star level and hit 40+ homers when at his best?

No, it’s impossible. Babe Ruth is not playing in 2022.

At least, that’s what we all thought a few years ago, before Ohtani tore up the American League and won the first of what could have been many MVPs. Assuming he stays healthy, Ohtani faces a massive payday after 2023 – his first and only year of arbitration.

LA would rather not let it get that far. While they should fear for Ohtani’s longevity, the only thing unluckier than a serious injury would be for the two-way star to stay healthy but play elsewhere.

Shohei Ohtani rumours: What are the Angels’ contract expectations?

FanSided MLB insider Robert Murray suggested in the latest issue of The Baseball Insiders Podcast that Ohtani could be awarded a multi-year contract worth over $50 million per season, which would be the largest annual AAV in the sport’s history.

This confirms some suspicions surrounding baseball, especially from Ken Rosenthal of The Athleticthat the Ohtani Chase will be unlike anything we’ve seen in the free-agent era.

The two sides entered into negotiations this past off-season, and this is what Rosenthal reported at the time:

Club officials agreed that in order to sign Ohtani, they would have to pay him a record average salary that would surpass Max Scherzer’s $43.3 million. But the Angels were reluctant, at least at the time, to make a long-term offer that Ohtani was almost certain to offer on the open market, sources said. Ohtani, who has one MVP season under his belt, was at the peak of his worth, much like Judge was with the Yankees. The talks never picked up speed.”

This means the Angels would have tied the majority of their budget – just under $100 million – to two players in Ohtani and Mike Trout. Although both are generational talents, it underscores how difficult it is to compete in this era of record spending.

How are they supposed to fill out the rest of their team, especially with Anthony Rendon still on the books?

Winning is everything for players, including Trout and Ohtani. But doing that with the angels has proved more difficult than expected. Shohei Ohtani’s contract expectations should be out of this world

John Verrall

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