It’s been a busy offseason for the Los Angeles Angels in 2022 with the addition of Tyler Anderson to the starting rotation via free agency and a few new additions to the starting lineup, but the question of Shohei Ohtani’s future will undoubtedly be on the top of everyone’s mind in the upcoming season.
What isn’t certain is the team’s ability to keep him long-term. There are multiple factors that’ll go into that decision, including how competitive the team forecasts to be, where the roster stands, and frankly if Ohtani wants to stay with the Angels. The 2022 Most Valuable Player missed out on a repeat selection to New York Yankees slugger, Aaron Judge, after breaking the single-season American League home run record.
General manager Perry Minasian will navigate how to handle Ohtani’s future with extreme care, mainly because there hasn’t been anyone like him in the modern-baseball era. But speculation around Major League Baseball is that they’ll do their best to keep him with the Angels before shifting their sights to the trade market, via Andy Martino of SNY:
The current perception from rivals is that Los Angeles is more likely to try to extend Ohtani, and, if they are unable to keep him, look to move him at July’s trade deadline.
Ohtani went 15-9 in 28 starts over the course of 2022, posting an ERA of 2.33, 2.40 FIP, and a 1.01 WHIP in 166 innings. At the plate, he slugged 34 home runs while posting a .875 on-base plus slugging.
With Angels owner Arte Moreno fielding offers to buy the franchise, plans could certainly change or influence how the payroll is managed, but until then, in the best interest of the team, they’ll need to keep him in Angel red.
Angels two-way star Shohei Ohtani plans to pay in World Baseball Classic
Ohtani announced his intentions to represent Japan in the upcoming World Baseball Classic with a message to fans who have lent their support over the course of the year.
Ohtani previously stated his desire to serve as the closer for team Japan in the WBC, and would certainly be an incredible addition to the talent pool.
With Ohtani officially joining Team Japan for the WBC, that makes two Angels superstars involved in some off-season baseball. Mike Trout is serving as the captain and centerfielder for the United States WBC team as well.
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