The dream became a tangible, visible reality when Shohei Ohtani stood outside Angel Stadium at a Saturday afternoon rally, in front of hundreds of fans and television audiences on both sides of the Pacific, and pulled on a red Angels jersey. Now comes the hard part. How, exactly, is the player known as “Japan’s Babe Ruth” really going to pull off this historic attempt to succeed as a pitcher and hitter in the majors? Answers from Ohtani, who spoke via an interpreter, were mostly vague, as were those from Manager Mike Scioscia and General Manager Billy Eppler. “When we sat down with Shohei we presented a plan,” Eppler said. “I don’t want to say that plan gets completely ripped up, but I bet a large portion of that plan now gets modified because it was from a one-party perspective. Now we have two parties. The most important party has joined it.” The 23-year-old Ohtani starred on the mound and at the plate in Japan. He pitched one day a week, which is standard in Japan but less frequent than the every-fifth-day routine in the majors. He was the designated hitter two or three days in between his starts, not hitting immediately before or after. The Angels went so far as to map out an entire season’s worth of work for him in a major league schedule, going off that blueprint, but Eppler said it’s all subject to change now.
Angels welcome Shohei Ohtani, while only hinting at how the two-way dream will work
Orange County Register | Dec 10