MLB Rumors: Mets Target Shohei Ohtani Sounds Open To An Off-Season Trade

Shohei Ohtani
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Ernesto Cova

The Los Angeles Angels look poised to miss the MLB playoffs for the eighth straight season. Firing Joe Maddon didn't solve their issues, and they continue to free-fall and find new ways to lose games on a daily basis.

But the biggest loss for the Halos hasn't come yet, and it may not happen on the field. Apparently, they could lose Japanese superstar Shohei Ohtani.

Ohtani Sounds Open To Leaving L.A.

Shohei Ohtani
Giphy | MLB

There were rumors about a potential Ohtani trade before the deadline. And while it didn't happen, it seems like the two-way star is open to finding a new home in the future:

"Regardless of where I'm playing, I want to give it my all, try to win the ballgame that's right in front of me," Ohtani told reporters before the deadline. "I'm with the Angels right now. And I'm very thankful for what they've done. I really love the team. I love my teammates. Right now, I'm an Angel, and that's all I can really focus on at this point."

Angels Never Considered A Trade

Shohei Ohtani
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The Angels are stuck with the often-injured Anthony Rendon and Mike Trout's mega-deal could be tough to move, especially as he has a full no-trade clause and has also struggled with injuries lately.

But, even though moving Ohtani seemed like a logical move right now, Jon Heyman of The New York Post reported that Angels owner Arte Moreno made it clear that they wouldn't trade him at this moment:

"The Shohei Ohtani trade never had a chance. Word is Angels owner Arte Moreno didn’t even want to hear offers, so talks barely got off the ground," Heyman wrote. "The Padres (of course) are among a dozen or so teams that checked in, offering different scenarios they’d consider. The Yankees did, too. But the Angels never seriously considered any of it."

They Might Lose Him

Shohei Ohtani
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Even so, Moreno has been reluctant to pay the luxury tax in the past, and Ohtani could demand a historical deal, even bigger than what Juan Soto is expected to fetch in the offseason:

"'In fourteen months, he’s out the door,' one rival exec predicted of Ohtani. 'And once he’s out the door, he’s never coming back,'" Heyman added.

Mets Make The Most Sense

Shohei Ohtani
Wikimedia | Ser Amantio di Nicolao

With that in mind, Jim Bowden predicts the New York Mets could be a potential destination for Ohtani. He has a strong bond with GM Billy Eppler, and they have more than enough money to sign him to the contract he'll look for:

"And the reason why the Mets connection is so important to listen to is that the GM of the Mets, Billy Eppler, was actually the GM of the Angels when they signed Ohtani," Bowden said."So, I don't think there's any questions that they will stay engaged with the Angels to see if they can pry him away. If they can't get at the deadline, I think they'll try to trade for him in the offseason," Bowden concluded.

Ohtani would welcome a reunion and the opportunity to play for a World Series contender, so his days in Anaheim are most likely over.