Who is Shohei Sho Time Ohtani?

Shohei Ohtani is a young man with a big arm, and a bright future. But there’s so much more to his game. Shohei is a MLB pitcher who continues to show promise of super star capacity, his career has led him to the heights of baseball fame and now he’s focused on becoming the best player he can be. Pitching, Hitting, and Outfielding made him something special to watch on the diamond.

The Climb To The Top

Shohei Ohtani attended Hanamaki Higashi High School in Iwate Prefecture, Northern Japan. As an eighteen year old, he threw the fastest pitch in the Japanese national high school baseball championship tournament, commonly called Summer Koshien. But before that he was already destined to be a star. 

Before becoming the Los Angeles Angels pitcher, designated hitter, and outfielder, he was just a kid with talent he didn’t understand. His infamous 99 mph fastball at Hanamaki Higashi High School was the stuff of legends. He threw the pitch in the Summer Koshien games and never looked back. 

Ohtani was introduced to the sport by his father, and soon the incredible speed of his fast ball drew both domestic and international attention. Initially, he wanted to go to the United States right after finishing school, skipping the Japanese draft, but the Hokkaido Nippon-Ham Fighters of Nippon Professional Baseball’s (NPB) Pacific League aggressively courted him. He eventually relented and became their first pick in the 2012 draft. 

Ohtani would play the next five seasons for the Fighters and would lead them to the Pacific League Championship and Japan Series title in 2016. He has also won several personal accolades and is the current holder of the record of throwing the fastest pitch by a Japanese pitcher and in NPB history at 102.5 mph. At the international level, he was a member of the bronze-winning Japanese team at the 2015 WBSC Premier 12 championship. In December 2017, he finally came to the US as a contracted player for the Los Angeles Angels. And in just a few years time, he’s made history (see The Future Is Bright section). 

Humility

Little is known about the quiet star, but his reputation has preceded him since birth.  As a child, Shohei Ohtani was what Japanese would consider a ‘yakyu shonen’, which means a kid who lives, eats, and breathes baseball. That hasn’t changed after all these years. He is still a humble and charming young man from the country on whom fame and fortune have little effect. He even lets his parents take care of his finances. In an effort to develop financial maturity in him, his mother puts about $1,000 every month in his personal bank account, but according to reports, he barely uses it. 

The Future Is Bright

Sho Time is far from done, he recently made history by being the  first in the near-century history of baseball’s All-Star Game: selection as both a hitter and a pitcher. So basically he will perform in the Home Run Derby, pitching and hitting in the game. If that’s not the stuff legends are made of, I don’t know what is. Help us wish Mr. Shohei Ohtani good luck the rest of the year, and stay tuned for more greatness. 

Highlight at Bat

Check out this monster hit that went 440 feet. He’s absolutely something special.