Ohtani signs 10-year, $920 million contract with Dodgers…

Japanese baseball star Shohei Ohtani, 29, has agreed to a 10-year, $700 million (about 920 billion won) free agent contract with the Los Angeles Dodgers of Major League Baseball (MLB).

“I chose the Dodgers as my next team,” Ohtani announced on his Instagram account on Sept. 9 (local time), adding, “It took me too long to make a decision. I’m sorry,” he wrote.

“I would like to thank the Los Angeles Angels (my hometown team) and the fans for their support over the past six years, as well as each of the clubs involved in this negotiation process,” he wrote, adding, “I will do my best to give the Dodgers my best.”

“Until the end of my career, I will continue to strive to serve not only the Dodgers, but the entire baseball world.”

Ohtani’s agent, Nez Valero, announced that the deal was for 10 years and $700 million.

The deal surpasses the MLB’s all-time largest contract, which was signed by Angels outfielder Mike Trout in 2019.

Trout signed a 12-year, $426.5 million deal with the Angels that ushered in the “$400 million” era.

Ohtani quickly surpassed the $500 million and $600 million mark, opening the door to $700 million.

Ohtani averages $70 million ($92.4 billion) per year, which is also the highest in MLB history.

Previously, pitchers Max Scherzer (39) and Justin Verlander (40) earned $43.3 million from the New York Mets.

“Ohtani’s salary exceeds the entire payroll of the Baltimore Orioles and Oakland Athletics,” according to the Associated Press.

Ohtani, a two-hitter, joined the Nippon Ham Fighters in 2013 and became an “idoryu” phenomenon in Japanese professional baseball before joining the Angels in 2018.

In his first full year in the big leagues, Ohtani won the American League (AL) Rookie of the Year award in 2018 with 22 home runs as a hitter and four wins as a pitcher, and he dominated the MLB by becoming the AL Most Valuable Player (MVP) in 2021 and 2023.

He won two “unanimous” MVP trophies. It was a first in MLB.

Ohtani set numerous “firsts” in his seemingly impossible two-hitter.

In his six MLB seasons, he went 38-19 with a 3.01 ERA as a pitcher, and as a hitter, he hit 171 home runs, 437 RBIs, and a career batting average of .274. His OPS, the sum of on-base percentage and slugging percentage, was 0.922, well above the 0.9 mark for superstars.

Ohtani is considered to have made baseball history beyond the MLB.

However, Ohtani injured his right elbow during the 2023 season and will only play as a designated hitter next season.

Some had predicted that his price tag would be lower than expected after being unable to pitch for a year, but Ohtani scoffed at the notion, blowing past expectations and hitting a $700 million “jackpot.

Ohtani was also highly sought after in the Stovrig League this winter. Multiple teams, including the Dodgers and Toronto, have made offers to the free agent, and American media outlets have published numerous articles predicting his destination. 슬롯게이밍

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