Shohei Ohtani Ties the Knot with Former Beautiful Athlete, Takes Stride Towards World’s top Ranking Amid Dreams | FRIDAY DIGITAL

Shohei Ohtani Ties the Knot with Former Beautiful Athlete, Takes Stride Towards World’s top Ranking Amid Dreams

Shohei Otani is on a roll, getting on base in 7 consecutive at-bats in the Open! Will the two-shot debut be at the All-Star game or after winning the World Series? With a life partner, his personal life is also evolving.

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A WBC championship, a major league homerun title, a record-breaking transfer to the Dodgers, and marriage. It was a tumultuous year for Otani.

The impact of his 117 mph pitch looked as if it was a shot to congratulate himself.

Shohei Ohtani, 29, of the Dodgers, playing second and DH in an open game against the Rockies on March 4 (Japan time), hit a straight ball thrown by left fielder Austin Gomber, 30, with his bat in the second inning. The white ball hit the top of the fence and went deep to center field with an explosion, and Ohtani reached third base at full speed. Even though the ball was blocked by the fence, it was still a big fly ball, nearly 130 meters high. The speed of the ball was 188.3 km/h, which was close to his fastest speed of 191.7 km/h, even though it was before the season started.

The astonishing news hit the newsstands on the evening of February 29, four days before the celebratory gunshot. The world’s most profitable athlete suddenly announced her marriage on her SNS, and not only the Japanese and U.S. media but even the British BBC carried the news. Jack Harris, a Dodgers reporter for the Los Angeles Times, spoke with excitement.

We who follow Ohtani day in and day out didn’t even hear about it. No one knew he was married or even had a girlfriend. In retrospect, maybe it was a sign that he was getting married when he started getting a dog named Dekopin. Major leaguers, who travel a lot, can’t have pets unless they have someone at home to take care of them.”

Even if his partner is a GM or a female announcer, Otani prioritizes training and sleeping time over dinners. The common understanding among the sports media was that he would probably get married after he retired. Who is his new wife?

Although it has not been made public, Otani has said in the past that his ideal wife would be “tall,” “sporty,” and “cheerful,” and it is believed that she is a tall, beautiful former athlete.

I understand your concern, but I would rather focus on how attractive Otani will be after his marriage, rather than who his wife is,” he said with a wry smile.

Ryota Igarashi, a former Major Leaguer who came to the U.S. with his family and played for the Mets and Blue Jays, laughs bitterly.

Ryota Igarashi, a former Major Leaguer who came to the U.S. with his family and played for the Mets and Blue Jays, said, “It is much more important than you can imagine to have someone you can come home and relax with and who gives you something to think about other than baseball. Even though Otani is a superstar, he is competing in a foreign country, and having someone to communicate 100% of what he wants to say in Japanese must be a great mental support for him. His teammates, interpreter Ippei Mizuhara (39), and his wife. Having different channels of conversation will make it easier for Otani to concentrate on baseball.

In Major League Baseball, there is a strong perception that “wives are teammates, too,” as exemplified by the “wives’ clubs” where players’ wives get together for charity activities.

MLB players have occasions to appear in public with their wives at several events, such as the red carpet at the All-Star Game and on the playing field after winning the World Series. I don’t know if Otani will bring his wife to these events. But from an American’s point of view, it would be very strange if he did not bring his partner. I don’t think his wife will not be attending the Mrs. Party, and I think the time will eventually come when she will appear in front of her fans.

While many players in the Japanese baseball world, such as Ichiro (50) and Shigeo Nagashima (88), who got married before coming to the U.S., have seen their performance decline in the season after their marriage, the opposite is true in the American baseball world.

Aaron Judge, 31, of the Yankees, who got married in ’21, hit 23 more home runs in the following year, ’22, than he did the year before, and was named MVP. Ichiro also made it a routine to eat curry prepared by his wife Yumiko every morning after coming to the U.S., and achieved 200 hits in a year for 10 consecutive years. There are many players in the majors who improve their performance with the support of their partners.

Otani’s marriage has enhanced both his personal life and his playing career. His “evolution” is also evident in unexpected ways.

He said, “This is something I have experienced, but now that I have a family, I have a stronger sense of caring for others. I am sure that this will have a positive impact on the team as well, such as watching Yoshinobu Yamamoto (25) pitch after his own practice. As an individual, he will want to improve his performance to protect his family, and I expect him to play more aggressively than he did last year, such as aiming for 40 home runs and 40 stolen bases.

Since joining the professional baseball world in 2001, Ohtani has been alone on his path to an unprecedented two-tooled career. In a year of great challenges, when he was on the verge of his long-cherished dream of winning the World Series, he had the “strongest helper,” who “makes dry curry from roux.

Otani appeared for an interview after the announcement of his marriage. He was a little shy, but answered questions from the Japanese and U.S. media.

It is said that he will not return to pitching until next year, but he seems to be doing well in his rehabilitation, as he showed how he is checking his pitching form.
With his dog, Dekopin. In his comment announcing his marriage, he vowed, “The two of us (and one dog) will work together and support each other.
The press, who had packed the stadium for the wedding, pointed their cameras at Otani’s left ring finger, but could not see a ring on it.

From the March 22, 2024 issue of FRIDAY

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