The Angels have announced a two-year, $8.5MM contract extension with pitcher/designated hitter Shohei Ohtani. The deal will keep the two sides from an arbitration hearing, after they failed to reach an agreement on Ohtani’s 2021 salary prior to the arb deadline. Jeff Fletcher of the Orange County Register (Twitter link) reports that Ohtani will earn $3MM in 2021 and $5.5MM in 2022.
The agreement wraps up the Angels’ final outstanding arbitration-eligible case for the 2020-21 offseason, and also sidesteps that may have been one of the more unusual arb hearings of all time. Ohtani and his camp were looking for $3.3MM in his first trip through the arbitration process, while Los Angeles countered with a $2.5MM figure. Given Ohtani’s unique two-way status, the injuries that have limited him on the mound over the last two seasons, and his down year the plate in 2020, an arbiter would have had plenty to weigh in determining Ohtani’s salary considering the lack of precedent.
Teams using the “file and trial” approach to arbitration cases usually don’t negotiate past the initial deadline unless a multi-year deal is being discussed. The two-year contract will give the Angels some cost certainty while also giving Ohtani $8MM in guaranteed money, and an opportunity at another arbitration raise for his third and final year of arb eligibility in 2023. (Assuming, of course, that Ohtani and the Angels don’t work out a longer-term deal before then that would extend the Halos’ team control over his services.)
After arriving in Major League Baseball with great fanfare during the 2017-18 offseason, Ohtani is still something of a question mark through three seasons, but he has also shown signs of why he was such a sought-after player. He captured AL Rookie Of The Year honors after hitting .285/.361/.564 with 22 homers over 367 plate appearances while also posting a 3.31 ERA and an outstanding 29.9 strikeout percentage and 19.4K-BB% over 51 2/3 innings on the mound.
Since that incredible debut, however, Ohtani has pitched only 1 2/3 MLB innings. The right-hander didn’t pitch at all in 2019 due to Tommy John surgery, and then a flexor strain shut down his 2020 pitching endeavors after just two outings — Ohtani crushed for seven runs over those 1 2/3 frames. Ohtani was still able to serve as a DH in 2019 and hit a very solid .286/.343/.505 over 425 PA, but then struggled to a .190/.291/.366 slash line in 175 PA this past season.
Ohtani made no excuses for his 2020 performance, describing his play as “pathetic” during a Kyodo News interview back in November. He is expected to be healthy for Spring Training, however, and Ohtani is intent on re-establishing himself as a two-way threat. Help on either front would be eagerly welcomed by an Angels team that has designs on finally getting back into contention in 2021, but a rebound from Ohtani as a pitcher would be particularly helpful considering how Anaheim has long looked for a front-of-the-rotation ace. The Halos acquired Jose Quintana and Alex Cobb this offseason to help beef up a six-man pitching staff, as Ohtani is again expected to pitch only one day per week.
Now lock up Fletcher on a long term deal
100% agree. They need to keep him around
Fletcher is already under club control for another 4 years. At that point he’ll be 30, which isn’t a good thing for free agents nowadays.
I’d love to get cost certainty and buy out his first 2 free agent years, though.
Ummm, yay? Maybe he can pitch this year and make the investment worthwhile.
Lol are you kidding? He’s only received about 3 million total so far in his Angel career. He was literally making $650,000 not too long ago. The Angels are making out like bandits with how little they’re paying him. His production at the plate is worth his contract alone, anything he provides on the mound gives him surplus value. If Ohtani could produce even an average season on the mound while staying healthy all year with the production he provides at the plate already, he’d be one of the most valuable players in the Majors.
A full time DH is not worth the contract he just signed. That’s my point. So hopefully he can get back to form on the mound where the Angels need him most. Otherwise he takes up a roster spot for a DH only player.
Prov. A full time DH who hit and runs the way he did in 2018 and 2019 is easily worth that.
Yes. A full time DH is worth $3M next year. Frankly, if he gives up pitching and just hits, he immediately becomes an OFer, not a DH. If he just pitches he’s worth $3M. Even with his injuries, you’ve had Ohtani on a bargain rate. Every other team will be happy to take him at this value based on what he’s delivered so far and his upside on both sides of the ball. This is a silky hill for you to die on.
“Silly.” Although make it silky for comfort.
If Ohtani pitches 100 league average innings and does nothing else, he is worth 3 million. He very well can be an above average hitter and pitcher – that is worth 20 million/ year.
mils100 – “If Ohtani pitches 100 league average innings and does nothing else…” “If” is the key word. It hasn’t happened yet.
No one want him to be a 2-way success more than me. I am skeptical at this point going into his 4th MLB season. I hope this is the turning point.
Don’t forget his 2020.
Angels had to pay his Japan team $20mil to even be able to sign Otani. They then paid $2.5mil as a signing bonus to him. So technically he already has been paid over $20mil for less than a full season of production
I actually thought “silky” was intentional
Lol ur crazy. Dude is extremely underpaid. His potential alone is worth way more than what he has been paid. U guys have bigger problems than worrying over an extra mill going to ohtani son
Under paid for pitching a total of 53 innings over three seasons, 52 of which were in early 2018…hmmm.
In 3 years he has pitched a total of 53 innings at below above average era. He is an above average hitter so far but brings no value on defense. If he can’t hold up as a pitcher they will have to decide how long do they keep up the experiment. Is he worth more as a full time outfielder or a oft injured pitcher who can hit. And once he hits free agency the price of these gambles go way up.
People are nuts. He won rookie of the year and was one of the top 25 hitters in baseball (wRC+) over 2019 and 2020.
That doesn’t even count his Innings pitched.
I don’t know if they don’t know baseball or don’t know how to interpret data.
11 – He won rookie of the year in 2018. It’s 2021. He’s pitched a total of 53.1 innings in three seasons. Only one inning was last year, the rest were early 2018. He has to pitch well this year because that’s what the allure was in signing him. We don’t need a DH only player taking up a roster spot. I don’t give a rip what his wRC+ is if that’s all he can do. BTW, he stunk up the plate in 2020 too, but you ignored that. We need pitching.
…and now the goalpost moving.
Prov. Phones are a horrible typing device. Yes. 2018 and 2019. It’s why I understand typos and try to understand what people are going for. Ohtani stunk last year.
Prov – You’re not listening. If/when he gives up pitching, the guy has the skills and track record to play OF. Under no circumstances is he DH only. So get that out of your head.
Whether as a DH or an OF, given his clear potential, he is absolutely worth the flyer at the rate they’re paying him. He’s already shown what he can do when healthy, and he’s still young enough to fully rebound. Any GM not willing to make this offer is just dumb. And the same goes for his pitching — top shelf potential if healthy — and again, there is simply not enough to judge whether that will happen. Lots of pitchers come back from injury.
On the balance, I think most knowledgeable baseball people would agree that the chance that Ohtani turns out to be worth $10M+ per year over the next two years VASTLY outweighs the chance he fails to be worth $3M/$5M.
There are no guarantees, but this is kind of an absolute no-brainer.
Balls – Thanks for that. I agree that his talent is clear. However, he has not been able to sustain 2-way status for more than 52 innings in early 2018. At some point you have to differentiate potential from reality. I am anxious to see what he does this season. If we transition him to a defensive position, I’m sure he’ll excel at it. Based on what we need though, I would rather see him excel on the mound and hang up his bat if it’s one or the other.
Angels had to pay his Japan team $20mil to even be able to sign Otani. They then paid $2.5mil as a signing bonus to him.
Prov: “At some point you have to differentiate potential from reality. ” I agree with this statement., but I suspect I disagree on whether it’s time to cut bait on the two-way player idea. I would contend that his injury was not at all due to the rigors of two-way status, but rather a product of pushing his body to the level of a world class athlete. There is plenty of time to make that call — later. Let’s enjoy him and see how things shake out in (hopefully – knocking on wood) a full and healthy season.
Balls – I completely agree. I am not ready to throw in the towel on 2-way status by any stretch. I think 2021 will be a defining year for him.
He’s always hurt. I love how Angel fans come on here talking about how great this guy is completely oblivious to the fact that he barely plays. Maybe if he gave up on pitching he’d bring some kind of value to that team but until then he’s going to miss more and more time due to injuries. Bust!!
I don’t think he’s a bust quite yet but I am definitely a skeptical Angels fans. 2021 has to be his year.
He’s a pitcher, he hurt his arm. And he has TJ surgery and still hits.
You people are insane. He’s had ONE injury.
You are suggesting he will be as valuable as Trout? Ohtani is a decent player. But he is far from superstar status.
6.5 WAR his first two years.
If he plays like he did his first two years he’s EASILY worth the Contract and Bonus and Whatever.
If he plays like he did last year, he’s not worth a roster spot.
This isn’t complex.
This all comes down to gambling over whether he can stay healthy AND compete at a level that is similar to his first two seasons. Of course, he is also rather unique in how many ways he can bring value back to the club — which only tilts things in favor of taking that risk. He’s young and capable.
Nope, not complex at all – given the already sunk costs and 2y cost projected.
Angels had to pay his Japan team $20mil to even be able to sign Otani. They then paid $2.5mil as a signing bonus to him.
Ok boach so at a going rate of $7 million per WAR, Ohtani has generated roughly $45 million in value for the cost of about $23 million to this point. Even if he contributes 0 WAR over the life of this 2 year deal that’s still $45 million in on field value for about $31 million.
His on field value doesn’t factor in the large number of fans who show up for him, the tons of jerseys he sold the first couple of years, the exposure the franchise receives in Japan, the increased marketing revenue from Japan, etc.
There’s absolutely no way to say this was a bad deal. Bad planning by the Angels to assume he’d be an ace and provide no depth behind him, but that wasn’t his fault.
Good deal for Angel’s very affordable
Can he pitch?
Just not yet in the mlb
I hope Ohtani comes back and is a great 2 way player like he was his rookie year. It was pretty obvious his hitting was impacted last year. He’s just a lot of fun to watch and a laughably good bargain for the Angels. However, if the pitching injuries continue, then I have to think they might need to just look at him as a right fielder.
This is his year! Mark my words!!
Can we please stop saying “two-way” player. He is a DH who occasionally pitches. Tony Sipp has spent more time in the Outfield than Ohtani has.
He can play the field, the team just chooses to DH him to try and keep him healthy.
It hasn’t worked!
@stymeedone unfortunately you’re right. If he can’t stay healthy at this age, it won’t get any better the older he gets.
While I agree he hasn’t lived up to the hype up to this point but don’t get it twisted, this guy is one of the best athletes in baseball. He could outfield and first base if the angels let him.
I see a two-way player as a pitcher or a hitter In the lineup
So does that makes every starting Pitcher in the National League a two-way player?
The Angels need his arm way more than his bat. With Pujols, Upton, Fowler, Suzuki, and Walsh all expected to share part time at DH with Shohei, he’s best served as a SP would can pinch hit.
Agreed that should be his role.
Ohtani’s potential is limitless, unfortunately I don’t think his body can keep up with his desire to play both sides. I don’t blame him for giving it a shot though, this is what he’s wanted since he was a teenager.
He has the skill to be a legitimately great OFer or pitcher. There remains a very real question if he’ll achieve greatness if he attempts to do both. Strategically, making Ohtani an OFer and a relief pitcher may generate the most value.
why? have you been intimate with his body to know what you don’t know?
@vizionaire I watched a video on biology one time in high school, so I’m kind of an expert
I’m not an Angels fan and realize this guy is a future MVP. He’s going to rake next year. If they can get 150IP and 500AB’s out of him.
I’d say even 125IP and 425AB would be solid.
That’s about 20-22 starts and 135G as DH.
They will be lucky if he pitches 150 Innings in the remainder of his career.
Any pitcher coming off injury is lucky to pitch 1 innings. Heck, any pitcher on a six man staff is lucky to pitch 150 innings.
If Ohtani pitches 100 innings he could win MVP.
Cap & Crunch
He wont pitch but 75 inns this year max, good chance 0
Cap, I’ll take that bet.
Cap & Crunch
Pack of 89 Upper Decks.. Lets go Griffey hunting
89 Upper Deck… Too rich for my blood. I’d bet you a beer at the game, but I live out of state.
I’d love to see an Angel game again.
That’s a great over/under at 75. Figure they bring him back on his old Sunday routine and he’s on pretty strict pitch limits, that is 15 starts at 5 innings each.
So if he misses the first 6 weeks, that leaves him 19 Sundays. He can even miss an occasional Sunday and still likely hit 75. But I doubt the Angels want him too much higher than that total.
Anyway, I sincerely hope 11 wins this bet.
@HH why would he miss the first 6 weeks??
He should be fully healed from 2018 TJ, and the other flexor strain was like 8 months ago.
Can’t wait for ST!!
There was no damage to his arm. He has about as much chance of coming back as any pitcher who had TJ Surgery. And if he can’t, he’s an outfielder.
Give me an 8th inning guy, then I can’t wait until spring training.
Halo11, yeah I didn’t think he was injured. I expect he’ll be playing at 2018 levels.
Also, they have an 8th inning guy you just refuse to accept it. Lol
another fortune teller?
Lol says the pessimist fortune teller fan named “vizionaire”.
You might as well change your name to ChickenLittle or SkyIsFalling.
Love how he holds himself to a high standard like that.
Serving two masters can’t work. Trying to DH between starts is not good for his pitching and interrupting his hitting by pitching isn’t that great either. He needs to probably focus on pitching because that’s what the Angels really lack and get into the routine of pitching the doing the correct strength and conditioning that is needed to pitch effectively. Use him as a PH in an emergency situation once in awhile, but let him focus on keeping the Angels in ballgames.
Wasn’t he able to do both at a high level his whole career before MLB? There’s no reason to think a player of his talent can’t do both. He’ll get a few injury free seasons to prove whether it is sustainable or not.
He used to be a threat but now he’s more like a thread.
Some Yanks fans have Shohei envy. Trout envy too. 🙂
I think all fans have Trout envy! Ohtani? I’m happy to watch this experiment from afar and not on my team. His existence should create additional depth, but it also can and has created roster complications. The original concern that he can’t be both a pitcher and hitter in the majors may be correct. Not because of skill, but because of the physical demand.
There were a sig number of Yank fans that assumed Ohtani would be in pinstripes…..Eppler did a nice job winning him over. At the time, it seemed like the Angels won the lottery. Three seasons later, I don’t think think he’s even on most peoples radar….but, every once in a while, you still see some Yank fan hate on him a bit.
Just like there was a significant number of Yankees fans that assumed that Machado AND Harper would be in pinstripes. However, not all of them assumed that, because I didn’t.
Excellent! Looking forward to Ohtani returning to 2018 form as a pitcher and DH. Should be an exciting season!!
kind of doubt it would be with the rotation and the pen as they are.
I don’t share your doubts.
hope you are a better judge of a baseball team’s future than i am. i have not been disappointed by the team for last 10 years because they were not that good.
Hey at least with your crappy attitude and pessimistic outlook when they lose you’re always right!
Way to go!!
I bet winning 98 games and the AL west in 2014 must’ve been gut wrenching…And yeah I know they lost in the 2014 playoffs to KC but playoffs are a crapshoot for every team in every sport.
yeah, playoffs are crapshoot but when you have good pitching you have loaded dice. and as long as arte is running the team he will make good profits but he won’t have a good team. being positive is not a positive thing if you can’t see the state the team is in.
The team is in California! Hahaha!
The pitching will be better than you enVizion and the Halos will win the AL West. 92-70!!
Quintana and Cobb, even at or slightly below league average, will add quality starts and easily be 8-10 wins better than Teheran and Sandoval in 2020. (Even over just 60 games)
Ohtani will be back and add more QS they were missing in 2020, the BP should be improved and more reliable as well.
Upgrades all around the field as well.
Ohtani and Quintana will likely be in the running for Comeback player of the year.
This guy’s future could go so many different ways. He’s got a strong work ethic and I wouldn’t bet against him bouncing back to become one of the top SP in the MLB….but he’s only got 1.2 IP over the last two seasons (and only 53.1 IP over his first three seasons).
Roll them dice!
Cap & Crunch
Wow what a steal…..Is his agent allergic to money??
How anyone questions this deal is just beyond comprehension
Keep in mind that he isn’t a free agent. This was his first season of arb eligibility. I’m with you though.. not sure how anyone can question this deal for the Angels.
The Angels actually did something good.
I wish him well. He is one of the most exciting players in baseball but just has been unlucky with injuries. I would imagine they’re giving him one more chance to stay healthy as a pitcher. If he gets hurt again, I see him moving to OF/DH full time. He is an exceptional talent either way. And besides a rough year last year, he has been a way above average hitter. I’d like to see the experiment of the two-way player work though.
I think it is important for MLB as a whole to encourage young players that have exceptional talent to play both ways. Yes, they may eventually have a hard decision to make, but you should want them to cultivate that talent as much as possible instead of potentially losing them to other sports when they’re young.
Remember when folks thought Ohtani would command a nine-figure deal had he waited two years to join the MLB as a free agent?
And he might have. No guarantee his arm gives out if he stays in Japan, waits a couple years, and then negotiates with multiple MLB teams.
He wanted to come to MLB straight out of high school. One of the main reasons he stayed in NPB was because the Fighters told him he could play both ways until he was ready to be posted.
An arbitrator would have looked at last years performance, and the Angels could have cut his pay 20% and had the argument to do so. Fair move on both parties.
Lol guaranteed money for someone whom can’t stay healthy let alone coming back from a major surgery is ludicrous! Should be performance based, not guaranteed! Numbers good but the details of the deal not so much.
You mean like Kluber?
You must be a fan of the Pirates. They are about the only team that doesn’t take chances like this.
There isn’t a team in baseball, including the Pirates that wouldn’t take this chance.
Halo11Fan48 mins ago
There isn’t a team in baseball, including the Pirates that wouldn’t take this chance.
As a RS fan, I’d take that contract and not think twice. At that price tag, I’d have him platoon with Renfroe in RF, JDM at DH, and pitch out of the BP. That’s a flat-out steal.
Ohtani needs to make up his mind, if he’s gonna be a hitter or pitcher.. focusing on multiple areas takes away from one.
Nah not a pirates fan lol. Braves actually. But it’s just another bad issue with these co tracts that gives guaranteed money to broken really unproven money to players. Happens every year. Sure risk is always included but with the broken bonus latent contracts should be the ones they receive.
If Ohtani was a free agent that would likely be the case. That’s not how arbitration works. Arbitration determines your salary, which is a set number.
Arbitration is not a set number. A player and his agent come up with a number that they believe is fair based off the player’s numbers compared to previous arbitration eligible players. The team does the same as well. Then each side presents their case to a third-party arbiter. The arbiter then selects which side made the best case. Sometimes the player wins, sometimes the team.
I don’t understand the Ohtani bashing in here. The contract is for $4.25/year. He had a weak year last year, but that was mostly on a bad BABIP. He’s easily worth that amount on hitting alone. Anything your get on the mound is pure gravy.
Not really Ohtani bashing….its just another case of fans, in this case Angels fans, fawning all over a guy that other than being a complete oddity in the league because he is both hitting and pitching….if you look at his stats, offensively he probably is in the upper third of the league but by no means “super star” status as reported by his fans…..and pitching wise has pretty not shown as much as expected with only 50+ innings over the course of 3 seasons. While only 25, he probably is athletic enough to certainly grow into the monster player Angels fans want and need, but currently is pretty far removed from that description…..whats that worth $ in todays MLB…that can be debated forever
Rocky, If he were a free agent, what do you think he’d get paid?
After three years… who is calling him a superstar? Who is even calling him a star? He’s a fine hitter. He’s a pitcher how had TJ surgery.
Pitchers USUALLY come back after TJ Surgery. Not always, but usually.
You people are nuts. I don’t know how else to put it.
I think this is a tremendous value! Huge talent! I think he will win an MVP before he’s done.
leftcoast11 - pyramidsuccess
Every team wished they signed Ohtani .Period!His story is still unwritten & he is a very blessed & talented baseball player.Upper 90’s gas, sb’s,& tape measure moon shots.If the halos get lucky ,he’ll be the #1 sp this organization needs desperately.Ohtani is an extra base hitting savant with a beautiful swing.6 man rotation so I predict 13 wins,15sb,25hr,&65rbi .Quit hating you look like you hit for a sombrero .Better recognize!
Ohtani will be back. His pitching got to him last season. One more year removed from Tommy John will do him well. It will be good for baseball and Angels if he can pitch every sunday and has an OBP of about .350-.375. Then the Angels will be a different team. He is the wild card of this teams future. I believe it will work out.
MLB needs to get their pitchers on a similar schedule to the Nippon League. Pitchers like Ohtani, Tanaka, Darvish and Dice-K have terrific seasons year after year in Japan then come to the US and start having arm trouble. Japan has figured out the best routine to keep pitchers healthy and MLB teams would get a lot more starts out of their starters by adopting a similar strategy. Japanese teams have a 6 man rotation and an off day every week. Their starters go deeper into games yet only pitch once a week. I have heard the argument that it’s because of their workload in Japan is the reason their arms breakdown. If that’s true then why don’t more pitchers currently pitching in Japan have more arm injuries? TJS happens in Japan but no where near as often as MLB. This new trend of thoracic outlet surgery is even more scary to see starters getting. I haven’t seen one comeback anywhere near the level they had prior to the surgery. The reason for the injuries isn’t the workload it’s all of the rest pitchers get between games. Once MLB figures it out they will get maximum value out of their pitchers.
Dumpster Divin Theo
Shohei the money. Shohei the Money! Shohei the Money!
Hopefully this process didn’t sour Shohei on the Angels and there’s still some hope for a long term deal. Especially if he shoves in ‘21