Are The Phillies Really In On The Shohei Ohtani Sweepstakes
Are the Phillies really in on the Shohei Ohtani sweepstakes? Never say never when it comes to John Middleton getting his guy. Money be damned! The oddsmakers don’t see them as a front-runner as they have them at +2000. A $10 bet would pay $210. Those odds aren’t bad for a team that’s not being talked about other than in Twitter/X whispers. Not a bad way to lose ten bucks. But are the Phillies really in on the Ohtani sweepstakes?
The Phillies have been the mystery team in high-profile free agents signings before. It’s never been a player this big, but think back to the Cliff Lee free agency (re)signing. The Yankees offered Lee a monster $154 million deal, but at the last second, the Phillies swooped in as the mystery team to bring Cliff Lee back to Philadelphia. There are few off-season things more exciting for fans than being the mystery team and pulling off a deal like that. Are John Middleton and Dave Dombrowski secretly stalking the Ohtani free agency like a jungle cat ready to pounce?
Neither guy has ever shied away from big-money, high-profile signings. John Middleton is exactly the owner you want as a fanbase. He just wants to win. He’s one of us, just with a few billion dollars to spend. Dombrowski, over his career, has signed many free agents that helped lead his teams to World Series appearances and wins. Look at some of the names he brought in when in Detroit and Boston. Miguel Cabrera, Ivan Rodriguez, Chris Sale, David Price, (ahem) Craig Kimbrel. Yeah, it worked with him in Boston, just not this time around in Philly.
Smoke usually means fire. It’s really small wispy smoke, but it’s still smoke. A weird part of Shohei Ohtani’s free agency is that his camp is saying the meetings need to be kept secret, otherwise, it will be held against them when making his decision. Maybe the Phillies are seriously following the request for secrecy. I’m certain that $500 million is enough of an apology for leaking the meetings.