Shocking, Devastating News For Shohei Ohtani & His Future

The greatest two-way baseball season in history has come to a devastating end, as Shohei Ohtani has suffered a torn ulnar collateral ligament in his elbow and will not pitch again in 2023. The next huge question is what this will mean for his free agency this summer, which was set up to be the most anticipated of all-time.

The Los Angeles Angels said it's still unclear whether the UCL will need surgery. The two-way superstar has already had one Tommy John surgery, back in 2018. Ohtani and the team will now seek other medical opinions on how to proceed.

The injury was diagnosed after he left his start after throwing just 26 pitches in the first game of the Angels' doubleheader with the Cincinnati Reds with arm pain. He insisted, however, on coming back to DH in the nightcap (he went 1-for-5). 

The injury will have massive ramifications on Ohtani's free agency this coming winter. He was expected to haul in the largest free agent contract in the history of the sport, with estimates he could command $500M or even $600M on a long-term deal. That, of course, was due to his ability to be a top-level hitter and pitcher

“Obviously it’s disappointing news. I feel terrible for him,” Angels GM Perry Minasian said. “But it is what it is. And if anybody can bounce back, it’s him.”

The Angels decided not to trade their unicorn superstar at the deadline, and tried valiantly to beef up the team for a playoff run. That turned into a disaster as the team immediately went into a tailspin. But Ohtani kept hitting bombs, and leads the majors with 44, still with a shot at the vaunted 60-HR mark.

He also leads MLB in OPS (1.069) and slugging (.664). He was (and still probably is) a shoo-in for MVP this season. 

What happens next remains to be seen. 

Photo: Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports