Thursday, November 30, 2017
Ohtani, of course, would appear to be special. He’s ridden the two-way thing into the hearts and minds of big-league franchises, which just last week were tasked with outlining their ideas for how they’d deploy Ohtani from their roster. Given Ohtani throws a 100-mph fastball and that his greater value would seem to be on the mound across 180-or-so innings, the challenge will come in the accumulation of at-bats. That is, where the at-bats will manifest themselves. As a designated hitter three or four times a week? As a semi-regular or platoon right fielder? As a starting pitcher who – gasp – runs the bases, bats with his pitching arm exposed, careens against outfield walls and possesses the time and energy required to acclimate himself to American cities, big-league pitchers and big-league hitters? Could he be great at both? Would the effort alone dilute it all, leaving him great at neither? Shouldn’t he try?
And what would that look like?
Well, no one seems to know for sure. For one, a major league hitter’s day looks pretty full. So does a major league pitcher’s.
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