Did Shohei Ohtani's interpreter lie about his education and former employment?

The story surrounding Shohei Ohtani and his former interpreter, Ippei Mizuhara, keeps getting stranger.

Team Korea v Los Angeles Dodgers
Team Korea v Los Angeles Dodgers / Masterpress/GettyImages

The story swirling around Shohei Ohtani keeps getting more obscure.

Earlier this week, his interpreter Ippei Mizuhara, was fired by the Los Angeles Dodgers. That followed news that Ohtani wired millions of dollars to an illegal bookie on Mizuhara's behalf. Later, Ohtani's representation alleged that Mizuhara actually stole the funds.

More information that The Athletic and specifically Sam Blum reported on Saturday night is making the context around the story even more confounding.

Blum details that often team employees are allowed to write their own biographies for the team media guide with minimal fact-checking, under the assumption and trust that employees will be truthful and accurate.

Ippei Mizuhara's biographical information was exaggerated or just plain wrong

Biographical information about Ippei Mizuhara -- that has now been gone through with a more fine-tooth comb given the public scandal -- is being contradicted.

Mizuhara's Dodgers biography said he graduated from the University of California, Riverside, in 2007, yet the school told Blum that he never attended the university. Blum reported he asked if it's possible he attended under a different name but didn't get a response.

Additionally, his bio said Mizuhara worked for the Red Sox. The organization has publicly refuted that claim.

"Mizuhara was never employed by the Boston Red Sox in any capacity and was not an interpreter for Hideki Okajima during the pitcher’s time with the team. Please know that we have thoroughly checked our files to ensure we are providing accurate information."

On its own, this would be interesting but not notable. Placed in the context of the ongoing gambling and theft scandal involving Ohtani, one has to wonder what it means. Is it an honest mistake or a misunderstanding? Or is it further detailing of compulsive dishonest behavior?

For now, it's impossible to say. Mizuhara has not made public comment since taking responsibility for the compulsive gambling habits that ostensibly led to the situation he and Ohtani are now in, with an MLB investigation ongoing.

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