Shohei Ohtani (29, Los Angeles Dodgers), the best active baseball star, stood in front of numerous reporters in a blue training suit symbolizing the U.S. professional baseball Dodgers.
Ohtani’s interview scene decorated the main screen of the official major league website.
Ohtani trained lightly at Glendale Camelback Ranch in Arizona on the 10th (Korea time).
On this day, the Dodgers began official training for pitchers and catchers and rehabilitation troops.
Ohtani said in interviews with MLB.COM in the U.S. and Nikkan Sports in Japan, “I’m starting anew in a new team,” adding, “I’ll act like a rookie.”마카오토토
Ohtani, who caused syndrome in the Major League by playing “both pitching and hitting jobs,” signed a 10-year, $700 million (about 925.5 billion won) contract with the Dodgers at the end of the 2023 season.
Ohtani’s every move has become the most important news in the Major League recently.
However, Ohtani said, “I’m like a rookie in the Dodgers. First of all, I have to get used to my teammates and new environment,” adding, “I’m saying hello to the team members first. It would be nice to remember everyone in one meeting, but I hope you understand if I say hello second without remembering the first greeting.”
Ohtani, who became the American League (AL) Most Valuable Player in 2021 and 2023 by wearing the Los Angeles Angels uniform and playing hard in pitching and hitting, will only play as a batter this year.
Ohtani had surgery on his right elbow in September last year.
“Otani rehabilitates as a pitcher and prepares for the actual game as a batter,” MLB.COM said.
“This is not my first time preparing for the season as a batter and rehabilitating as a pitcher,” Ohtani said calmly. “Now that I understand the process, I can train more comfortably than before.”
He also underwent elbow surgery in October 2018, and in 2019 he was a batter and rehabilitated as a pitcher.
The preparation for the opening game to play as a batter is going well.
Ohtani said, “I’m practicing batting almost 100 percent of my training. I’ve come to the stage where I’m hitting a pitcher’s ball.”
Ohtani, who participated in the Dodgers’ fan festival at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles, California on the 4th and said, “I am sure I will participate in the opening game,” also expressed his willingness to participate in the opening game.
Yoshinobu Yamamoto, a pitcher recruited by the Dodgers, threw 21 pitches in the bullpen.
As Ohtani and Yamamoto held official spring camp training at the same time, interest in the two grew.
“It is my first time to play in the same team as a Japanese player since I moved to the Major League. I have the advantage of being able to communicate comfortably because I have Japanese players, and I have many opportunities to communicate side by side through rockers,” Ohtani said. “Yamamoto is one of the team members who has the same goal of winning the Dodgers. I want to establish good relations with all the members of the Dodgers,” he said in consideration of other Dodgers teammates.