Shohei Ohtani Rumors: Market unaffected by injury, FA sleeper, Padres out?

Shohei Ohtani, Los Angeles Angels
Shohei Ohtani, Los Angeles Angels / Ronald Martinez/GettyImages
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Shohei Ohtani Rumors: Padres can't afford the man...Or can they?

The NY Post's Jon Heyman gives the San Diego Padres the second-best odds to land Shohei Ohtani (7 to 1). This is despite an executive's claim that "there's no way [the Padres] can afford him."

Heyman asks a rhetorical question in return: "Did anyone think they could afford decade deals for Xander Bogaerts, Fernando Tatis Jr. and Manny Machado (twice)?"

No, no one thought that. And as long as the Padres' Santa Claus of mega-contracts A.J. Preller is still general manager, San Diego has a decent shot at signing Ohtani (more so now after his unfortunate injury news).

Back when Ohtani first entered free agency in 2017, the Padres were one of six other teams blessed with an Ohtani visit. The Angels won out in the end, but best believe Preller is still out there at sea trying to reel in the Japanese albatross.

Why the down-bad Padres over the 80-win Dodgers this upcoming free agency?

As The Athletic's Dennis Lin puts it, the Dodgers can offer Ohtani what everyone believes he wants: "an environment conducive to perennial postseason play." But the Padres, they can give him something else altogether: "The Padres, under Seidler, have proven their willingness to spend vast sums of money and cater to star players who follow unique routines that can be disrupted by poor weather."

The "best" team doesn't always get the best player. The Padres aren't out on Ohtani until they say they are.

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