Los Angeles vs. Toronto in a free-agency battle for Shohei Ohtani? It's on!

Bill Shaikin, Los Angeles Times on

Published in Baseball

LOS ANGELES — We don't know whether the Dodgers and Toronto Blue Jays are the two finalists to sign Shohei Ohtani. We don't know much about Ohtani's free agency, by design.

But we do know that Ohtani has met with the Dodgers and Blue Jays in recent days, and that was enough to spark what turned into an international debate.

On Wednesday, on the Dodgers-owned SportsNet LA channel, analyst and former Dodgers player Jerry Hairston Jr. made his pitch for Ohtani to sign with the Dodgers. On Thursday, on Toronto's legendary morning show "Breakfast Television," host Sid Seixeiro shared part of Hairston's pitch with his viewers.

"He is talking directly to Shohei Ohtani … trying to make the case to sign with the Dodgers while insulting this entire country," Seixeiro said. "Try and digest this with your corn flakes."

Good morning, Canada! Let's take this point by counterpoint:

— Hairston: "You'd have to listen to two national anthems."


— Seixeiro: "Listening to two national anthems is great. You know why? You get to hear the American one, and then you get to hear the better one."

— Winner: Toronto. The Canadian anthem is superior (try singing both). But, since Ohtani grew up in Japan, there is no allegiance here either way.

— Hairston: "The taxes would crush you."

— Seixeiro: "Yeah, we got taxes up in Canada, but California has the fifth-highest taxes out of any state in America."


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