Shohei Ohtani ‘Bonding’ With Dodgers Hitting Coaches

Shohei Ohtani is showing off a side of himself that was unfamiliar to the Los Angeles Dodgers and manager Dave Roberts early in the year.

The process of players and coaches becoming more familiar with Ohtani was slow to begin with, but the departure of Ippei Mizuhara following his alleged theft and illegal gambling activity seemed to open that up.

Roberts said Mizuhara made communication with Ohtani more difficult than it needed to be for the Dodgers coaching staff.

However, with Will Ireton now working as the in-between for the two sides, Ohtani has been engaging more everyone on the team.

It has also been extremely beneficial for the Dodgers coaching staff as they try to build a rapport built on mutual trust with Ohtani, according to Andy McCullough of the Athletic:

Manager Dave Roberts praised Ohtani for his “willingness on the margins to get better.” He suggested Ohtani was bonding with hitting coaches Aaron Bates and Robert Van Scoyoc. “They’re really building a good relationship and trust,” Roberts said. “I just see him now. I see him more. Before, you sort of just see him when he gets to the batter’s box. So he’s around a lot more, which is a good thing, too.”

Whatever Ohtani and his hitting coaches have been talking about it seems to be working as he ranks near the top of several significant statistical categories. After a slow start to the season, he has been on a prolonged hot streak at the plate.

Ohtani has been showing off not just game-changing ability with his bat, but also with his speed, which has impressed Roberts and the rest of the Dodgers’ coaching staff.

Shohei Ohtani appreciates Dodgers’ support through federal investigation

Throughout the investigation to clear his name of the sports betting scandal, Ohtani had the unwavering support of the entire Dodgers organization and especially his teammates.

This support did not go unnoticed by Ohtani and it was something that he was grateful for during a difficult time.

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