Chicago Cubs: Creating the requested Shohei Ohtani memo
By Jake Misener
An evaluation of Shohei’s talent as a pitcher and/or a hitter
For the Chicago Cubs, Otani represents more of a pitcher than a regular two-way player. But, given Joe Maddon‘s tendency to mix-and-match defensively, the Cubs represent the best chance he has at such an environment in the National League.
A lot of managers play the mix-and-match game come October. But Maddon has done this successfully for years in both Chicago and Tampa Bay. His untraditional approach to managing will allow him to better handle Ohtani and working him into regular actions on both sides of the ball.
This MLB.com scouting report perfectly encapsulates how the Cubs view Otani and his talent:
"“He’s a big, strong guy,” a scouting director said. “At 6-foot-5, he’s a long-lever guy. He has shortened up his swing a little and has the chance to hit for some power. When you have a top-end-of-rotation guy, he’s more of a pitcher for me. But he has the chance to be a good hitter. He’s a very, very good athlete.”"
Ohtani represents a quality bat when he digs into the box. He’s got a stroke that could translate into 20-homer power over the course of an entire season. In Japan, he demonstrated good plate coverage combined with impressive pop.
On the mound, of course, Ohtani emulates his idol, Yu Darvish. The deliveries are quite similar and he features a mix of pitches that will keep opposing hitters off-balance. In all, he is a true two-way talent.