Mets offseason move that fits into their new direction #5: Sign Shohei Ohtani
You didn’t think you’d read a 2023-24 offseason prediction that didn’t include Shohei Ohtani, did you? He fits into the long term plans of every MLB team, and the Mets are one of the few that can afford his services.
Shohei the pitcher is having another splendid season. He’s made 21 starts and pitched 124.2 innings. He’s allowed just 82 hits, 46 earned runs, 51 walks, and he’s struck out 160 batters. His ERA is 3.32, his FIP is 4.07, his WHIP is 1.07, and his ERA+ is 135. He leads the league in H/9 with 5.9.
Shohei the hitter is even better. He’s slashing a ridiculous .306/.409/.672/1.081 with 40 homers, 18 doubles, 82 RBI, and 86 runs scored. He leads the league in slugging percentage, OPS, OPS+ (188), triples (7), and total bases (279) and he leads the American League in walks (71) and on-base percentage. He’s also stolen 14 bases.
It’s all but guaranteed that Ohtani wins the AL MVP Award for the second time in three years, and I would argue he should’ve won it over Aaron Judge last year in what would’ve been three consecutive MVPs. He’s also going to get by far the largest contract in MLB history, with most estimates being around $600 million and some being as high as $700 million. That really limits his suitors, but Steve Cohen has the pockets to bring him to Queens for the rest of his career.