Mets given favorable odds to land Shohei Ohtani in offseason

Los Angeles Angels designated hitter Shohei Ohtani (17) reacts after fouling a ball off his foot during the first inning against the New York Mets at Citi Field
Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

Los Angeles Angels two-way superstar Shohei Ohtani is the most anticipated free agent in recent memory and the New York Mets have the makings to acquire him this offseason.

Ohtani Worth A Deeper Tax Hole For the Mets

New York Post reporter Jon Heyman allotted 8-1 odds to the Mets among all contenders for the pitching and hitting maven:

“Steve Cohen obviously can afford it. The drawback of course is that the Mets are already in the highest tax territory, meaning they’ll be taxed at 110 percent on most if not all his contract (so a $60M salary is really $126M),” Cohen noted. Some predict the Mets to be “more disciplined” after last year’s spending spree. But this is a special case. Odds: 8-1.”

Cohen gave the Texas Rangers, Los Angeles Dodgers, and San Francisco Giants the highest joint odds to acquire Ohtani yet he doesn’t count the Mets out as serious contenders in the mix.

Ohtani will demand a serious salary — some reports estimate an excess of $500 million will be the calling card to bring him in.

The Mets are in the biggest market in the United States. Cohen can break the bank, knowing that Ohtani will strengthen his pitching staff and create a two-headed power-hitting monster alongside Pete Alonso that will bring him a worthy return on investment.

Looking Like an MVP Yet Again

This season, Ohtani became the first Japanese player to lead an MLB conference in home runs with 44 bombs in the American League. He posted a .304 ERA and also led the league with a .412 OBP, a .654 slug percentage, and a 184 OPS+.

On the pitching side, Ohtani saw a slight rise in ERA (.314) and WHIP (1.061) from his 2022 peripherals, yet his numbers looked nearly identical to that of his 2021 MVP season.

His 10-5 record would only boost a Mets team that regressed by a whopping 26 wins from a year ago. Having Ohtani in town would also add to the draw that Cohen is trying to create in Queens, NY., as he pushes forward in his initiative to build a casino near Citi Field.

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