Shohei Ohtani has been the talk of the baseball world all winter, with fans wondering where the prolific two-way player would land in free agency before he finally signed the biggest contract in the history of American Sports to play for the Los Angeles Dodgers, just a few miles away from the Los Angeles Angels where he had spent every season in his Major League Baseball career.
Ohtani, who wore number 17 with the Angels, will once again be donning the same number 17 for the Dodgers, thanks to the generosity of new teammate and fellow pitcher Joe Kelly. Kelly wore the number 17 last season, but seeing an opportunity to make the new face of the franchise feel at home, he quickly conceded the uniform to the Japanese phenom.
Now, Kelly’s kindness has been paid for in full by Shohei. In a video released on Instagram, Joe Kelly can be heard celebrating with his wife Ashley as a brand new Porsche was delivered to their front door. Ashely had initially opened the door to Shohei in the offseason, saying that her husband would give up his jersey number should the star join the team.
Now, in a cool gesture of gratitude and Christmas giving, she will be driving a brand new sports car from one of the best players in pro sports. In the video, Joe Kelly can be heard telling his wife, “It’s yours. From Shohei. He wanted to gift you a Porsche. I swear.”
Shohei has made a name for himself in the MLB as being a great baseball player but also a good person who is beloved in the locker room and by fans all across the league. It is fitting, and very like him, to make one of the first things that he does after signing the biggest contract in American sports to give a massive gift to a teammate before their first season together even begins.
It is actions like this that have made the rest of the league so envious of the Los Angeles Dodgers this December. Not only did the team reel in one of the league’s best hitters, who also happens to be one of the league’s best pitchers when healthy, but they also got one of the best guys in baseball when it comes to giving back to his teammates and doing the right thing.
Shohei’s ten-year contract is set to pay him $700 million dollars when it is all said and done, a sum that was nearly unfathomable, even in the high-paying sport of baseball, until Shohei burst onto the scene. Having a player that is prolific as both a hitter and pitcher can have several benefits that makes Ohtani worth such a high price.
Given that he can play on both sides, Ohtani opens up a roster spot by basically acting as two players, one pitcher and one hitter. If you can pair that with him being a guy that his teammates love, he may very well justify the absurdly large contract in no time.
Featured image credit: By 駐日アメリカ合衆国大使館 – https://twitter.com/USAmbJapan/status/1631482934275510272, Public Domain, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=130126631
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