Mike Trout’s past declaration undercuts Shohei Ohtani’s explanation of story change

Mike Trout’s past declaration undercuts Shohei Ohtani’s explanation of story change

A Mike Trout quote from the past makes the explanation of conflicting stories one that’s difficult to believe.

Los Angeles Angels v Los Angeles Dodgers

Los Angeles Angels v Los Angeles Dodgers / Harry How/GettyImages

 

The first week of Shohei Ohtani’s Los Angeles Dodgers career was supposed to be filled with highlights from MLB’s new supervillain. Turns out, it’s been filled with nothing but distractions. Sure, Ohtani did have three hits in ten at-bats in the Seoul Series, but all chatter surrounding the two-time MVP has revolved around Ohtani’s gambling scandal.

It was initially reported that Ohtani paid off debts that interpreter Ippei Mizuhara owed, but a later report from Ohtani’s camp suggested that Mizuhara stole the money from Ohtani. Conflicting stories surrounding this situation has caused the entire baseball world to raise its eyebrows not only in the direction of Mizuhara, but Ohtani as well.

How a story of this magnitude can conflict like that is something really only Ohtani and Mizuhara can answer. A source close to Ohtani gave an explanation for the changing storylines for Tisha Thompson of ESPN.

On Thursday, a source close to Ohtani gave an explanation for the changing storylines: As Ohtani’s handlers tried to determine what had happened, they initially relied solely on Mizuhara, who continued to translate for Ohtani.

When the story initially broke, Mizuhara was still employed by the Dodgers and translating for Ohtani. He gave what Ohtani’s camp deems a false representation of what happened.

Ohtani not understanding what Mizuhara was saying in English might make some sense, but with what former teammate with the Los Angeles Angels Mike Trout had to say in the past about Ohtani and his level of understanding of the English language, this just gets more confusing.

Mike Trout’s past declaration makes explanation of Shohei Ohtani story change tough to believe

Back in 2021 when Ohtani was on his way to winning his first of two MVP awards thanks to his elite two-way ability, Trout had this to say regarding an Ohtani weakness.

Since there was no real baseball weakness, Trout joked that he’d say his English. That’d be understandable, but he followed that up by saying “he’s mastered that.” Trout didn’t say he’s learning or getting better at English, he went as far as to say he has mastered it.

We haven’t heard Ohtani speak in English much, but that makes sense. He should speak in the language he’s most comfortable with, and he should have an interpreter speaking on his behalf. Still, this raises some obvious questions.

Mizuhara is being accused of stealing $4.5 million from Ohtani. Sure, in the grand scheme of things that’s not much money for Ohtani, but theft is theft. If this man was stealing from you and lying about what happened, shouldn’t you set the story straight? Ohtani evidently has English mastered (or so Trout said), so it’s strange to see him allow Mizuhara to speak for him only to have his legal team completely change the story just moments later.

Hopefully, when Ohtani speaks on Monday he can give some clarity as to what’s going on, or at least give an explanation as to why the story changed.

 

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