Everything to know on Shohei Ohtani rumors, Blue Jays report, flight details and more

Where exactly is Shohei Ohtani? The world may never know for sure.

Shohei Ohtani, Los Angeles Angels
Shohei Ohtani, Los Angeles Angels / Kiyoshi Mio-USA TODAY Sports
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It has been a strange Friday in the MLB world.

With anticipation building around Shohei Ohtani's looming free agency decision, the morning began with a bombshell from Jon Morosi on MLB Network — Ohtani could decide today.

Then the conspiracies took flight. Literally.

A private jet scheduled to travel from Santa Ana to Toronto caught the attention of internet sleuths. The trajectory showed Ohtani potentially landing in Toronto around 4:30 PM E.T., where a sushi restaurant in the vicinity of Rogers Centre has been reserved for a party of "50-plus" for the night.

Fans tracked the flight online, and were momentarily vindicated when Morosi reported that Ohtani was, in fact, on his way to Toronto. He did, however, note that there is no signed agreement between Ohtani and a team.

That wouldn't really diminish the significance of Ohtani flying north. The Toronto Blue Jays have gained considerable steam in recent days. The Los Angeles Dodgers were betting favorites for months, but now the Blue Jays appear to be a very serious option.

A gut-wrenching blow was delivered to the Toronto fandom little more than one hour after Morosi's latest report.

According to USA Today scribe Bob Nightengale, Ohtani is not in Toronto or on his way to Toronto. He's actually on his couch in Southern California, which makes a great deal more sense when one considers that Ohtani probably wouldn't fly to Toronto without committing.

The Nightengale update doesn't necessarily move the needle. Ohtani can still pick the Blue Jays, who have clearly impressed him in the interview process. He could also return to the Los Angeles Angels, although the Dodgers would appear to be the logical favorites — still. Ohtani wants to win and he has a well-documented appreciation for the city of LA. Toronto is a significant cross-country move and he would be subject to a drastic climate adjustment.

It is, however, extremely notable that Ohtani is not actually in Toronto. It's clear a lot of reporting on the Ohtani subject today has been... questionably sourced. A lot of folks are jumping the gun. For now, he's sitting at home contemplating his choices, and that is all we know with relative certainty.

UPDATE: Morosi sent out an apology on Twitter late Friday night for reporting "inaccurate information that Shohei Ohtani was traveling to Toronto.

Will the Blue Jays sign Shohei Ohtani?

At this point, the Blue Jays are the most interesting threat to upend the Dodgers' big offseason plans. Rogers Communications, the company that owns the Blue Jays and broadcasts NHL games in Canada, is eager to reshape the Canadian TV market around a more profitable baseball team. Aside from the obvious on-field benefit, Ohtani is a one-man marketing machine who will draw more eyeballs to Toronto baseball if he does sign.

Ohtani is a legitimately global superstar, so he could find appeal in the Blue Jays' unique status as the MLB's only international franchise. That said, Ohtani's well-documented comfort level in Los Angeles is hard to overstate. The Angels gave him total freedom over his routine and allowed him to live outside the public eye when he's away from the game. The Dodgers are right down the street and can deliver Ohtani his first postseason berth.

Toronto is built to contend, fresh off a hard-fought 89-win campaign in the loaded AL East. The Blue Jays aren't the Dodgers, though, and Toronto's front office has historically been less eager to pay max dollar for a contender.

We can only wait and see at this point. The clock ticks... we will see if Ohtani actually makes his decision today, or if this saga drags out another day.

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