Shohei Ohtani Rumors: Free Agency Meetings Being Held With Finalists

Little is publicly known with Shohei Ohtani but he’s captivated MLB free agency that largely has been at a standstill thus far because of the two-way superstar.

Speculation has been rampant over Ohtani’s preferred geographical location, stadium environments and contract terms. What’s not as unclear is Ohtani’s priority to be part of an organization that is in position to contend for a World Series.

As the start of MLB’s Winter Meetings in Nashville loom at the beginning of the week, Ohtani’s free agency process appears to be reaching its final stages.

According to Ben Nicholson-Smith of Sportsnet, Ohtani and agent Nez Balelo are due to meet:

While team executives are uniformly quiet on the sweepstakes out of respect for Ohtani, other industry sources with knowledge of the process say the negotiations are entering their final stretch with a small group of teams expected to meet with the 29-year-old and his CAA Sports representatives in Los Angeles this weekend.

Ohtani holding free agency meetings at the Creative Artists Agency building in Century City follows a similar process to what unfold after he was posted in 2017 to join MLB from Nippon Professional Baseball (NPB).

Like in that instance, negotiations and meetings are heavily guarded. Ohtani reportedly would eliminate a team from consideration if there were any leaks about their discussions.

Which teams are finalists to sign Shohei Ohtani?

Since the start of free agency, the Atlanta Braves, Boston Red Sox, Chicago Cubs, Los Angeles Angels, Los Angeles Dodgers, New York Mets, New York Yankees, San Francisco Giants, Seattle Mariners and Toronto Blue Jays have been connected to Ohtani at various points.

However, the Mets and Mariners were recently said to have lost confidence in their odds to sign the 29-year-old and thus seemingly fell out of the race.

Finalists to sign Ohtani are believed to be the Angels, Blue Jays, Cubs and Dodgers. The Dodgers have long been considered the favorite and many still consider them the likely landing spot.

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