Like the rest of the league, San Francisco Giants fans are eagerly awaiting Shohei Ohtani's decision as to where he is going to sign. The Giants have pushed hard to try and sign him and by all accounts, they are among the finalists to sign him. However, things took a very strange turn yesterday where, for a few glorious hours, we saw internet sleuths and even one national baseball writer go from becoming convinced that Shohei was headed to the Blue Jays based on some "interesting" information to having that completely debunked.
First, there was a report from Jon Morosi that Ohtani's decision was imminent and that he could make his decision as soon as Friday. JP Hoornstra from Dodgers Nation then reported that Shohei had decided on the Toronto Blue Jays. What followed was a hilarious connecting of dots involving a plane that was leaving California for Toronto that folks were convinced was Shohei as well as a large restaurant reservation made by Yusei Kikuchi that folks were sure was going to include Ohtani.
The end result? Nothing. Nada. Zilch. While Morosi doubled down and said that Shohei was indeed in flight to Toronto, multiple reports came out that Shohei had not decided yet and he wasn't in flight to anywhere. The previous reports were so incorrect that Morosi had to issue a retraction and an apology.
As fun as it has been to dunk on Morosi for getting things so hilariously wrong, the reality is that sometimes sources, even trusted ones, give bad information. In an industry where speed in reporting can be paramount, mistakes happen and this one was certainly a whopper.
However, it isn't hard to notice some similarities between what went down with Ohtani yesterday and all of the drama that happened with Carlos Correa last offseason.
The Shohei Ohtani drama yesterday felt a LOT like the Carlos Correa saga
Around the same time last offseason, reports starting coming out that the Giants were closing in on signing Carlos Correa. San Francisco had a clear long-term need for an impact bat as well as a shortstop, so the connection made all the sense in the world. Then, it was reported that the Giants and Correa had agreed on a 13 year deal worth $350 million and fans rejoiced.
That was when things got weird.
Not long after those reports came out, there were whispers that the deal hadn't been finalized. Again, for that much money, most felt that the team was just doublechecking everything and that there was no cause for concern. However, the delays persisted and word got out that there was an issue with Correa's medicals. A week later, the deal had fallen through and Correa was supposed to be heading to Mets before that, too, didn't work out because of the same concerns with Correa's ankle and he ended up back with the Twins.
In some ways, the two situations is comparing apples to oranges. The Correa situation happened because more medical information came out that caused the Giants and Mets to change their minds and not because the information was never true which appears to be the case with this Ohtani nonsense. Both news cycles were truly bizarre, but the Correa thing is easier to understand chronologically.
So to Blue Jays fans, we feel for you because Giants fans have very recently been there. They don't feel THAT bad, though, because the end result means that San Francisco still has a very real chance to land the once-in-a-generation talent that is Ohtani.