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Leaked: Shohei Ohtani’s Pitching Days Coming Sooner Than Expected After Footage Reveals Dodgers’ Plans

Published 05/15/2024, 10:50 AM EDT

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The hitting extravaganza of Shohei Ohtani could soon be turning into pitching fireworks. Yes, his return to the mound might still be a little far (do the Los Angeles Dodgers even want it?), but the superstar is constantly preparing for a comeback. From reports of him catching to pictures of Ohtani throwing some balls, the internet has been bombarded with Shotime’s pitching acts. However, the video leaked today could perhaps be the greatest indication of his recovery going better than expected.

From the get-go, fans wondered whether Shohei Ohtani would be able to pitch even a little bit this season. His elbow surgery in September 2023 effectively shut him off from pitching but that didn’t stop speculations of his return. From playoffs to August, everyone had their own prediction. However, the leaked video indicates – a return to pitching might just be imminent for Shohei Ohtani.

Fans witnessed a peculiar sight as the Los Angeles Dodgers prepared to face off against the San Francisco Giants. There in the bullpen stood Shohei Ohtani with a baseball in his hands. The two-way superstar began throwing balls at the catcher. Though he wasn’t throwing them with his usual intensity, they were still strong enough to become an encouraging sign for the fans. Is Shohei Ohtani’s return to the mound sooner rather than later?

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One can’t deny that Ohtani’s hitting abilities have grown tremendously this season. The superstar leads the league in multiple categories and could arguably be the best hitter in baseball currently. However, that doesn’t mean that pitching isn’t on his mind. After all, before he was turned into a two-way phenom, Ohtani primarily identified as a pitcher.

More importantly, the Dodgers are paying $700 million to him to be a two-way player for them. However, if by any chance the Blue Crew doesn’t want Ohtani to pitch again, what does it mean for his contract?

Does Shohei Ohtani’s long-term future with the Dodgers include pitching?

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As of now, Shohei Ohtani’s WAR is 2.8. Now if the two-way phenom continues his present form, he’d be somewhere over 10 by the end of this season. That’d be his career’s best number and he’d do that by just being a DH. However, it can’t be denied that when he’s playing two-way – Shotime is pretty much worth two players at once. That’s what made his $700 million deal such an obvious one.

But now the Los Angeles Dodgers’ worries are genuine. What if Ohtani returns to pitching and loses his current hitting mojo? Or worse, what if he gets his elbow injured again? Even the great Babe Ruth had to give up pitching eventually. Could something similar be in the future of Shotime? Perhaps it could. But until then, these are just speculations. Ohtani is throwing again and that is great news for his fans.

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Written by:

Sanskar Dubey

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Sanskar Dubey is an MLB writer at EssentiallySports. From writing various aspects of baseball like MLB Rule Modifications to diving deep into the world of minor and major leagues, Sanskar covers it all. He loves to write for the sport when there is a hot tussle between the National League and American League throughout the season.
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