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Mariners Moose Tracks, 12/10/23: Julio Rodríguez, Shohei Ohtani, and Rōki Sasaki

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MLB: Los Angeles Angels at Milwaukee Brewers Benny Sieu-USA TODAY Sports

In Mariners news...

  • I can’t tell who is more excited to be where they are. The dozens of frantic children trying to get an autograph from Julio, or Julio signing autographs for dozens of frantic children. You be the judge.
  • Huh, that’s weird, it’s almost as if the Astros have absolutely zero business being in this division whatsoever. Who knew?

Around the league...

  • I hope by some insane miracle I get to be the first one to break this news to some absolute cave dweller right now.

“The Decision: Shohei Edition” is in! Shohei Ohtani (pending physicals, but like, come on. The only thing that could stop this deal is Shohei losing a fist fight to a roided out bear in the next twelve hours) is going to the Los Angeles Dodgers for the next ten years, and for his services will be paid $700 million!

  • THREAD: A key part of the Ohtani signing is just how this contract will work. According to ESPN’s Jeff Passan, the “majority of the contract is deferred,” which means a number of things:
  1. After Shohei retires we’re going to have to rename Bobby Bonilla Day.
  2. Deferring payments on the contract means that this monstrous deal will not affect the Dodgers in the competitive balance tax as harshly as originally believed. By doing this, Shohei gets his payday, while letting the Dodgers retain some free capital to continue making acquisitions.
  3. Also there’s something here about deferring means he’ll actually make less than the value of the contract in the long run, but I’m not an economist, someone explain it to me like I’m five in the comments.
  • Meanwhile in Anaheim, fans are suffering a deep sense of communal loss as the national media refused to let them off the leash, consistently giving hope to people with what were more than likely frivolous connections between the Ohtani camp and the Angels organization. Yesterday, finally forced to face a reality that should’ve been clear months ago, and amid the removal of the Ohtani mural from the facing of the stadium, the grieving process was finally allowed to begin.
  • With the Ohtani domino finally fallen, others will soon follow, and another player has presumably been added to the pile. With DH locked up for the next ten years, the Dodgers likely no longer require the services of J.D. Martinez.
  • The Atlanta Braves hot stove is actually just a hot revolving door this offseason. So far the Braves have acquired via trade, then promptly turned around and traded away Jackson Kowar (from Royals; to Mariners), Marco Gonzales (from Mariners; to Pirates), Evan White (from Mariners; to Angels), and Max Stassi (from Angels; to White Sox). Because of how tightly the Braves front office is wrapped up, it is impossible to tell what the eventual end goal of all these moves are, but the one thing I’m sure of is that David Fletcher probably shouldn’t bother unpacking his suitcase.
  • Japanese super star pitcher Rōki Sasaki shocked the Chiba Lotte Marines by asking his team to post him. Due to the way that posting fees work, the Marines are extremely unmotivated and highly unlikely to grant the 22-year-old fireballer’s wish, but this is certainly a situation worth keeping an eye on.

Nick’s pick(s)...

  • As has been mentioned, the Ohtani era in Anaheim is ended, and with it, so too does one of the truly great traditions of the last two years end with it. Goodbye Tungsten Arm O’Doyle tweet. You truly were one of the great tweets of all time.

May 7, 2021 - December 9, 2023.

Gone but not forgotten.

  • Huskies quarterback Michael Penix Jr. finished second in the Heisman voting last night, but he took home a runaway first place in the Drip category.