So, you’re disillusioned with the Yankees‘ Juan Soto pursuit and worried about giving up too much of your top-end talent? Understandable. That’s a hefty price to pay for one player who can only do so much in four at-bats per night. What about paying a similar price for a guy who gets four at-bats a night, then pivots to throwing six shutout innings the next day?
You know. The guy with a rule named after him permitting him to remain in games as a DH after he’s already whiffed the side and exited. Shohei Ohtani himself. According to recent reports, he’s “available” in thick air quotes, but the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim will listen. And why wouldn’t they, stuck in neutral with Ohtani’s free agency approaching after one more full season?
How likely is an Ohtani trade at this point? According to Jon Heyman, two executives have assessed the possibility as “almost zero” and “very slim” … so you’re saying there’s a chance it could be revisited at the Winter Meetings?
Heyman’s report goes on to describe the asking price as “your four top prospects,” which sounds steep at first until you realize that Soto’s market has been more costly at this point, including established big-leaguers, too. It also sounds a bit less steep when you remember we’re talking about Shohei Ohtani, who can fill two gaps at the same time and do so expertly.
While nothing is remotely close, Ohtani was asked about the possibility of a trade after yet another brilliant start Thursday evening. His boilerplate “I’m with the Angels right now” answer sums up the whole discussion nicely; this isn’t over.
So, do the New York Yankees have a chance to acquire Ohtani, whether he’s all-caps AVAILABLE right now or not?
They can certainly put together as strong and as deep a package as anyone, but might face a unique hurdle.