Report: Blue Jays, Ohtani believed to have met at Florida complex
The Toronto Blue Jays remain in the hunt for Shohei Ohtani, and club officials are believed to have met with the free-agent star and his representatives Monday at the team's spring training complex in Dunedin, Florida, according to The Athletic's Ken Rosenthal.
It's not known if Ohtani is close to making a deal, notes Rosenthal, who adds Blue Jays general manager Ross Atkins was absent from the winter meetings in Nashville on Monday but attended a media availability via Zoom.
The Blue Jays also reportedly rescheduled manager John Schneider's media availability from Monday to Tuesday. Ohtani's agent, Nez Balelo, was absent from the winter meetings Monday, a source told Rosenthal.
Toronto has been connected to Ohtani for weeks, although its level of interest in the two-way sensation has been unclear. The Blue Jays have been mentioned on a list of Ohtani suitors, along with the Atlanta Braves, Chicago Cubs, Los Angeles Angels, Los Angeles Dodgers, and San Francisco Giants.
The Blue Jays' interest in Ohtani follows a disappointing finish to a 2023 campaign in which the Minnesota Twins eliminated them in the wild-card series in two games. Toronto hasn't won a postseason contest since 2016.
Ohtani is expected to obtain a contract in the $500-million to $600-million range after winning his second unanimous AL MVP last season.