MLB Rumors: Cubs creativity on full display in Shohei Ohtani chase

The Chicago Cubs are reportedly getting creative in their attempts to sway two-way star Shohei Ohtani.

Oakland Athletics v Los Angeles Angels
Oakland Athletics v Los Angeles Angels / Ronald Martinez/GettyImages

The Chicago Cubs are in on Shohei Ohtani. This is no great surprise, as Chicago has been mentioned as a likely suitor for weeks. The Cubs big offseason started when they made Craig Counsell their manager.

Pursuing Ohtani and landing Ohtani are two very different matters, though. The Japanese star and two-time AL MVP will have his choice of any team in baseball at the end of the day. The Los Angeles Dodgers have long been favored to land him, but there is some competition around MLB, including in Chicago. The Cubs are playing from behind, and are willing to get creative.

"The Cubs understand it will take a historic offer to land Ohtani, and they're willing to be creative in negotiations. With Ohtani’s pitching career on hold for one season, the Cubs would likely be willing to give him the flexibility to have opt-out language in the contract," Bruce Levine writes.

MLB Rumors: Cubs to get creative in Shohei Ohtani pitch

Whatever creative means is a mystery to myself and readers alike. I have no clue what the Cubs are planning, but I do know it will be a test for Jed Hoyer and the Chicago front office. ESPN's Jeff Passan reiterated Ohtani's reported desire to stay on the west coast.

"Ohtani, according to multiple sources, has expressed affinity for certain teams and cities in the past. He deeply respects the Los Angeles Dodgers’ winning ways, their ability to develop players and their progressive coaching approach," Passan wrote.

Give the Cubs credit for mixing things up, but only Ohtani can decide where his loyalty truly lies. The Dodgers likely give him the best chance to win, but signing with Chicago also has its perks. The Cubs are serious about winning and signing Ohtani would move up their timeline. Ohtani would also be a welcomed addition to the rotation come 2025, when he's expected to pitch again.