Even though he’s not a free agent yet, the Shohei Ohtani sweepstakes are definitely underway. He’ll hit the market after the 2023 season concludes, and with the Los Angeles Angels not expected to contend, he might be traded before that.
Naturally, most would assume the two New York teams – the Yankees and Mets – would be interested. A piece like Ohtani would put either team well over the top.
However, Andy Martino of SNY reports:
“As with the Mets, a trade to the Yanks seems highly unlikely. For what it‘s worth, both New York teams talked to the Angels about Ohtani last year and didn’t get anywhere close to an agreement. The best chance for Ohtani to land in New York, then, is through free agency — not a shocking conclusion, but one reinforced by this week’s news.”
Martino believes neither team is likely to spring for what could end up being the most expensive rental of all time.
One team may, but they’d have to know that Ohtani might re-sign elsewhere after a few months. The Los Angeles Dodgers, San Francisco Giants, Mets, Yankees and several other teams will be competing with each other for his services.
Whichever team trades for him will likely have to meet an unfathomably high asking price, and that’s only if owner Arte Moreno (who recently decided not to sell the team) decides to let Ohtani leave early.
New York Mets already gearing up for a run at Shohei Ohtani
If there’s one thing about Mets owner Steve Cohen, it’s that he will spend. He spent record numbers this year and tried to spend more on Carlos Correa.
He is reportedly already asking about Shohei Ohtani, per Martino:
“According to sources, Cohen has already been talking openly to upper level Mets people about going after Ohtani this winter. The Yankees were fairly aggressive in their exploration of a trade for Ohtani last July, so they can’t be ruled out.”
The Mets would still have most of their roster from this year, including the big signings. Adding Ohtani would make them World Series favorites.