Rival Exec Pegs Blue Jays As "Sleeper" In Shohei Ohtani Sweepstakes

The Shohei Ohtani talk continues to take baseball by storm—south and north of the border. 

According to MLB Insider Ken Rosenthal in The Athletic, one rival baseball executive thinks the Toronto Blue Jays actually do have a shot at landing the Japanese superstar, against all odds. 

At least one rival executive views the Blue Jays as a sleeper for Shohei Ohtani.

The exec’s rationale is this: Any plans the Jays had to sign Vladimir Guerrero Jr. and Bo Bichette to massive extensions might now be on hold. George Springer’s six-year, $150 million contract expires after 2026. The team remains in need of left-handed power.

It makes some sense, as after the performance of Guerrero this past season, the Jays would certainly need to see a better year from Vladdy in 2024 before they consider handing him a nine-figure contract. Bichette is already signed to a short-term deal, and don't have to deal with his next contract until 2025 at least. 

Toronto has some other advantages as well, being a true international city, as Rosenthal points out, and that may be something that appeals to Ohtani. The city also has a large and growing Japanese population. He already has the fans of one entire country, Japan, in his corner, and in Toronto he could nab another entire country's imagination. 

Of course, the competition is stiff from the likes of the LA Dodgers, amongst others out West, which has always seemed to be a preferred Ohtani destination.

His price tag will, of course, be formidable, and he now officially has two MVP Awards on his resume, after being named AL MVP Thursday evening. 

Photo: Kiyoshi Mio-USA TODAY Sports