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Report: Blue Jays, Dodgers and Rangers 'chasing' Ohtani

Los Angeles Angels Shohei Ohtani - The Canadian Press

ESPN's Jeff Passan reports the Toronto Blue Jays, Los Angeles Dodgers and Texas Rangers are "chasing" superstar free agent Shohei Ohtani as the MLB off-season continues.

Passan reported earlier this month that the Blue Jays "want to do something big" this winter. He also reported that the industry's overwhelming expectation is that he will end up in Los Angeles due to the Dodgers' financial and geographical advantages, their history of on-field success, and the club's history of signing large deals.

The 29-year-old won his second American League's MVP this season despite being shut down with a torn ligament in his pitching elbow late in the year. He finished with a career best .304 average with 44 home runs and 95 RBI in 135 games. He also made 23 starts in 2023, posting a record of 10-5 with a 3.14 ERA, 1.061 WHIP, and 167 strikeouts in 132 innings.

Ohtani underwent elbow surgery in September and is not expected to pitch during the 2024 season.

According to his doctor, he is expected to be available as a hitter by Opening Day 2024. A free-agent deal for Ohtani is expected to be in the neighbourhood of $500 million.

The Blue Jays were swept in the wild-card round of the playoffs by the Minnesota Twins last month. Despite reaching the postseason in three of the past four years, the Blue Jays have failed to win a playoff game since reaching the American League Championship Series in 2016.