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Ohtani's 'perfect person' image could take a hit with firing of interpreter over gambling

84 Comments
By STEPHEN WADE and TONG-HYUNG KIM

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84 Comments
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Not to worry... It looks like he has a guy taking the fall.

-7 ( +14 / -21 )

Ohtani apparently lost his only close friend — sadly.

According to the LA Times, the two typically drove to the ballpark together. They were rarely seen apart around team facilities. Mizuhara performed grocery runs for Ohtani. And their wives had started to share time together.

13 ( +16 / -3 )

Here come the conspiracy theories. "Oh, he's bad. Bad bad bad." It's very difficult to believe Ohtani is guilty of anything but naivety.

1 ( +11 / -10 )

Well if the narrative is correct that Ohtani paid off Ippei's huge debt directly because he didn't want Ippei to go gamble the money away, Ohtani still looks like a good guy helping a friend out. For a man making tens of millions per year, he needs better advisors that any involvement with gambling even if not directly is a huge sin in sports and can lead to his career being destroyed.

11 ( +14 / -3 )

His under the radar marriage makes sense now, because I think the event was possibly a rushed one to deflect from this scandal that he must have known was coming and this is very a common occurrence in Japan. Of course, not necessarily marriage, however, bigwigs and not only in Japan but many other countries, too, they will find anything to deflect such scandal from their names.

2 ( +9 / -7 )

Wait someone need an interpreter to talk in English, how come that interpreter never show up anywhere in Japan news outlet so it make cool image as an athlete who internationalize and can speak English. Existence of this interpreter is not being known until scandal finally arise.

-15 ( +3 / -18 )

If Ohtani was more involved than he is saying, it will become clear because the FBI has the bookie's computer and phone, which is how the transfer came to light in the first place. Until then, his story does indeed paint the picture of incredible naivety and trust on Ohtani's part. What I don't get is the second accusation by Ohtani's lawyer that Mizuhara carried out "massive theft". Was this this the transfer itself, or something else?

12 ( +12 / -0 )

If we can stop with the "celebrity worship", it'd be great.

2 ( +12 / -10 )

So Ohtani's friend/interpreter gets into trouble with gambling, and the bookie knowing that he works for Ohtani lets him get in deeper and deeper because maybe Mizuhara has boasted about his relationship with Ohtani. He wracks up 4.5 million in debts and then the bookie comes calling. Mizuhara doesn't have the money and he asks his friend, not boss as we know he was hired by the Dodgers, to help his out. Ohtani doesn't trust him with the money so he wires it to the bookie.

What should have Ohtani done in this situation. Gone to the police? The Dodgers? This was his friend. I think he was trying to help out and being a bit naïve, thought by paying it off it would all go away. I don't see any crime here at all, and think a lot of people are jealous and would love to see him knocked down a peg.

2 ( +7 / -5 )

Mark,US have laws involving the facilitation of banks in criminals activity

-5 ( +4 / -9 )

how come that interpreter never show up anywhere in Japan news outlet

To even the most casual baseball fan, he was known on a first name basis as Ohtani’s terp/manager, “Ippei” and was probably has about half as much screen time as Ohtani himself.

4 ( +6 / -2 )

"Ohtani's 'perfect person' image could take a hit with firing of interpreter over gambling

"

What a stupid headline, what is he supposed to do? Keep a thief employed and risk losing more money. Name one company in their right mind that wouldn't fire a stealing gamble addict ?

-8 ( +4 / -12 )

It's just an opinion, but it's sometimes really hard to see a person's heart. Quite often the people who are doing something wrong are well aware of it and are very good at hiding it. Most of us know of people and situations like this where someone with a major problem in their life is hiding in plain sight. It's not all that unusual.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

From an interesting piece in The Los Angeles Times by sportswriter Dylan Hernandez:

"Ohtani won’t tell his story, so his story is being told by people less articulate and charming than himself.

"His public image is now in the custody of people who are hopeful this story will simply vanish.

"It won’t."

6 ( +8 / -2 )

There is a raft of possible issues and crimes here, state and federal, with an ongoing investigation at that level.

Tax evasion, wire fraud, financial fraud, federal anti-money laundering charges, potential illegal payments to offshore accounts and dealing with an illegal bookmaking racket that uses such accounts, are just a few possibilities.

Whoever being engaged in the business of betting or wagering knowingly uses a wire communication facility for the transmission in interstate or foreign commerce of bets or wagers or information assisting in the placing of bets or wagers on any sporting event or contest, or for the transmission of a wire communication which entitles the recipient to receive money or credit as a result of bets or wagers, or for information assisting in the placing of bets or wagers, shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than two years, or both.  

Page 312 section 1084 of US Criminal Code

People get thrown in the can in an orange jumpsuit with a number on the back all the time for these just a few of these things.

Mizuhara also walked back his story, saying Ohtani had no knowledge of his gambling or debt and did not make the wire transfers that are in his name — a day after he told ESPN Ohtani was the one who transferred money to the bookmaker's associate.

1 ( +6 / -5 )

I think they were in it together, however, with the kind of money being wired and deposited in the US of course the red flags went up. A lot of Japanese can get away with it in Japan but not in the US

5 ( +7 / -2 )

I think the big question now is which version of the story is true.

1) Ohtani paid off Mizuhara's debts as a favor to a close friend

2) Mizuhara stole the money and somehow did the transfer in Ohtani's name

Right now, Ohtani's lawyers and tabloid press (https://nypost.com/2024/03/21/sports/how-shohei-ohtani-realized-his-interpreter-was-stealing-from-him/) are promoting version 2. My guess is that this version clears Ohtani of any legal wrongdoing. But it's hard to believe that he didn't notice the missing 4.5 million, so I tend to lean toward version 1 as being more plausible.

I think it will become clear soon.

8 ( +8 / -0 )

going to be the tastiest 30 for 30 in history after he gets hit with an investigation and a 200 game ban

7 ( +8 / -1 )

obladi

I think the big question now is which version of the story is true.

1) Ohtani paid off Mizuhara's debts as a favor to a close friend

2) Mizuhara stole the money and somehow did the transfer in Ohtani's name

Right now, Ohtani's lawyers and tabloid press (https://nypost.com/2024/03/21/sports/how-shohei-ohtani-realized-his-interpreter-was-stealing-from-him/) are promoting version 2. My guess is that this version clears Ohtani of any legal wrongdoing. But it's hard to believe that he didn't notice the missing 4.5 million, so I tend to lean toward version 1 as being more plausible.

I think it will become clear soon.

It could be a third option:

The bets were Ohtani's and Mizuhara is the fall guy.
4 ( +7 / -3 )

The payments are believed to be in Ohtani's name.

Question is whether he or Mizuhara made them. And if the latter, do you believe this interpreter-assistant had access to millions of dollars from his bank accounts. Seems a bit fishy.

As mentioned above, Mizuhara originally said Ohtani made the payments before changing his tune.

7 ( +9 / -2 )

Well at least now the J-media can talk about something else about Ohtani, other than the usual stalking reports of him and his wife.

Also, the Dodgers didn't know about Ippei's gambling problem and Shohei knows nothing before they signed him? Ippei retracted his original statement that Shohei helped him pay off his debt.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

この世に完璧な人間はいない。

There are no perfect people in this world.

A phrase I use on a regular and repetitive basis in my job as a wedding minister.

7 ( +9 / -2 )

3,he will eventually be contacted by the Fed or testify before a Federal grand jury

-2 ( +5 / -7 )

Not “could”, “will.”

I don’t believe he had anything to do with gambling. But it’s his name on the wire transfers.

Before I say this next part, I first want to say I am a big Otani fan. Even more than his talent, I like the way he plays the game. I like the way he treats the fans. I like the way he doesn’t dive for the dollars. Nonetheless….

Unless and until either theft can be proven, at minimum there will be suspicion that he was trying to cover it up.

Very likely this is a case of a guy who should have gotten professional advice, bailing out a friend not understanding the blowback it could entail.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

A true friend will stick with you even when you've got a major problem (like gambling) and are embroiled in trouble.

So far, and unless other information to the contrary comes out, this all boils down to Ohtani standing by a friend and trying to do his best to help his friend with a problem.

And maybe he made a poor judgment or two in the course of helping his friend -- for instance, paying his friend's gambling debts directly from his own bank account instead of doing it some other way.

But the way I see it, Ohtani was being a true friend -- not just a fair-weather friend. His friend was in trouble and he tried to help.

If anything -- and, again, unless there's more to the story that comes out that changes things -- Ohtani's decision to stand by his friend in his friend's hour of need only raises his stock in my mind.

3 ( +6 / -3 )

Ohtani could wind up wearing a very different uniform with a number on his back.

-3 ( +5 / -8 )

2020hindsights Today  08:34 am JST

It could be a third option:

The bets were Ohtani's and Mizuhara is the fall guy.

If that were the case, though, I would think that Ohtani wouldn't have made those payments to the bookie directly from his own bank account, with his own name all over them.

If he were gambling himself, I doubt he'd be stupid enough to leave any sort of "digital paper trail" like that.

4 ( +6 / -2 )

going to be the tastiest 30 for 30 in history after he gets hit with an investigation and a 200 game ban

Sorry, Commissioner Manfred isn't letting go of his league's biggest cash cow.

A lot of Japanese can get away with it in Japan but not in the US

So you see a few pachinko parlors on your way home from the station and you think Japan doesn't have strict gambling laws? Most sports gambling is HIGHLY illegal here too and both baseball players and sumo wrestlers have been charged and banned for life for doing so.

0 ( +4 / -4 )

Amazing how people fall in love with some stars and think he or she is perfect just because they do something well and the press tells them. Kids, there is no such thing! He hits and throws a baseball very well, and, last time I checked he was a flawed human being, just like the rest of us. If he were an average baseball player, all the people here holding onto his jockstrap wouldn't give a damn nor call him perfect nor spend all of their breath defending him. Get a life already!

10 ( +11 / -1 )

I'm fairly sure most Japanese still view Ohtani as being as close to a "perfect person" as possible. His association with a very dubious individual is a blotch on his character I guess - but it one of the risks that occur with enormous wealth and fame.

He has the perfect lifestyle, wife and job - I am sure this issue will disappear soon.

Ohtani could wind up wearing a very different uniform with a number on his back.

In that case, half of the US male population would also have to go to jail. Sports gambling is ubiquitous.

-7 ( +2 / -9 )

Time to circle the wagons, Michael Jordan had gambling issues and now he's a multi-billionaire, richest athlete in history of the world. Maybe Otani should give him a call...

3 ( +6 / -3 )

Well, the jury is still out, so we should reserve judgment until all of the facts are in.

Was Ohtani a gambling addict? Was he just trying to help out a friend? Was Ohtani ignorant of the way things are done in the USA?

They all might be true to varying degrees, but it’s up to a judge and trial to determine guilt and innocence.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

Sports gambling is illegal in CA.

1 ( +6 / -5 )

I'm not sure I believe the whole line about how Ohtani was just an innocent victim because I find it hard to believe Ohtani didn't know something was going on given how close they were. Once people start gambling heavily people inevitably find out and rumours start going round. Sounds to me more like damage control.

5 ( +7 / -2 )

Ohtani and the Dodgers should have better judgment in picking the people he works with," he added.

He was the interpreter. I don't think most people worry about picking the "right one" when especially in this case, it was someone Ohtani was comfortable with and apparently was a friend.

In two other at-bats he hit towering drives to right just a few feet short of a home run.

This is just a more glorious way to say he flied out twice. I love Ohtani but the media needs to stop garnishing everything he does. Be a little more honest and straightforward.

By the way, no news in JT about the high scoring game last night? Or about how $300,000,000 contract Yamamoto got slapped with five runs in the first inning? Was yanked before the second? A pitcher who had never pitched a MLB game given a massive contract?

2 ( +4 / -2 )

There is a separate story in the sports section about last night's game.

Othani will be distracted by all these Feds ,breathing down his neck

2 ( +5 / -3 )

Yawn

0 ( +3 / -3 )

Or about how $300,000,000 contract Yamamoto got slapped with five runs in the first inning? Was yanked before the second?

That's all Japanese media. Ohtani's fly balls were bigger news than Yamamoto's first start and Matsui's 2nd game. We will probably hardly hear about the other Japanese players at all this season unless they are playing the Dodgers.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

More of the onion will be unpeeled the US press are like sharks,seeing Blood in the water

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

"Information spreads at amazing speeds these days, narratives are made before the truth of the facts are figured out,"

Yup, I hope JT posters keep that in mind.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

Let's see what happens, big business and relations with Japan weigh heavily on this matter being quietly "managed". Too $much to $lose. Just another great example of the two tiers for justice!

1 ( +3 / -2 )

This story really got to me yesterday morning on my commute to work. I first heard it from the US. An hour later, she got the news from Japan. We discussed the story, when later, she told me that Mizuhara had access to Ohtani's account (I guess that was his bank account). That raised some flags for me. 1. Why would Ohtani let Mizuhara have access to Ohtani's account. 2. Why would Mizuhara be convicted of theft? Unless they were married (just saying for example, nothing meant by that) that it would be a joint account. 3. You think actually it was Ohtani who made the bets and considering his celebrity status and not shaming Japan and losing face with Japan and baseball, you would think Mizuhara was the "fall guy" to preserve his prestine status?

This is my guess, but I think the authorities will do a further check on Ohtani's account along with the organization where the money was transferred to. I think either way, someone will be fired. If it were Ohtani, he would be banned from baseball, deported, and lose face with Japan and Japanese baseball. So, because of these things, I think Mizuhara was really the fall guy for him. Mizuhara has less to lose from this.

5 ( +7 / -2 )

Hope ,he under American control of Justice

1 ( +5 / -4 )

This story really got to me yesterday morning on my commute to work. I first heard it from the US. An hour later, she got the news from Japan. We discussed the story, when later, she told me that Mizuhara had access to Ohtani's account (I guess that was his bank account). 

Who is this mysterious "she", and what information does she have that we don't? So far, there were 2 stories - one that the money was stolen, and the other that Ohtani wired the money himself to help out his friend.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

 I think Mizuhara was really the fall guy for him. Mizuhara has less to lose from this.

You would think Ohtani would have known Mizuhara was gambling all this time. I mean, they spend so much time together. Its not something you do between the hours of 2-4am when everyone is sleeping. Gambling addicts are constantly thinking and planning their next wager. With sports betting, they are constantly checking scores and results, future matchups. Ohtani would have noticed Mizu's behaviour, even noticed the apps on his phone and the calls he makes while driving around in expensive cars together.

So yeah, probably Ohtani was involved more than they're saying. I think its something they did together for fun, but through an illegal bookie. Obviously Ohtani wasn't able to do it by himself, he needed a translator to communicate and make the big bets.

7 ( +8 / -1 )

He should have stayed with the Angels....

2 ( +4 / -2 )

"Here's my bank account information. Use my money any way you see fit, I mean, we are good friends, aren't we?" Going back to the 1990s here...things that make you go, hmm.

3 ( +6 / -3 )

In the wise words of Hannah Montana, "Nobody's perfect".

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Fighto!  09:45 am JST

*He has the perfect wife.*

Wife???

Mocheake 09:28 am JST

Amazing how people fall in love with some stars and think he or she is perfect just because they do something well and the press tells them. Kids, there is no such thing! He hits and throws a baseball very well, and, last time I checked he was a flawed human being, just like the rest of us. If he were an average baseball player, all the people here holding onto his jockstrap wouldn't give a damn nor call him perfect nor spend all of their breath defending him. Get a life already!

Yharnam Resident  11:27 am JST

In the wise words of Hannah Montana, "Nobody's perfect".

0 ( +4 / -4 )

He has the **perfect wife**.

Wife???

Keep up - Ohtani recently announced he was married. It was actually reasonably big news in Japan a few weeks back.

-8 ( +1 / -9 )

Hope ,he under American control of Justice

He's on US soil, playing for a US organization. US laws apply.

2 ( +5 / -3 )

therougouToday  10:56 am JST

This story really got to me yesterday morning on my commute to work. I first heard it from the US. An hour later, she got the news from Japan. We discussed the story, when later, she told me that Mizuhara had access to Ohtani's account (I guess that was his bank account). 

Who is this mysterious "she", and what information does she have that we don't? So far, there were 2 stories - one that the money was stolen, and the other that Ohtani wired the money himself to help out his friend.

@therougou - Sorry about that. I was anxious writing this that I forgot to check. That "she" is my wife. I usually check the US news on my way to work and stumbled on the article. It was just after 7am at the time. I then relayed it to my wife, who originally said that she hadn't heard the news yet. She told me she got the news at 7:30 am. My bad.

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

Perfect person impeccable behaviour,

We all as human beings, thrive on the flaws that define us, that make us all venerable, provide us all with the means to recognize our failings and improve.

We achieve an understanding, embrace empathy, kindness, develop nurture the character to appreciate the meaning of disposition, to succumb to the temptations of life.

Ohtani likes a flutter.

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

“Are they trying to say to us that an interpreter had access to his account that would enable him to get an additional $3.5 million out of that account on top of two $500,000 wire transfers?” — Stephen A. Smith, ESPN

5 ( +6 / -1 )

Chassis and aged old advice/adage. Don't buy into any public image, good or bad. IE, don't spend/waste your hard earned money on any thing based on public image which you personally don't need, require.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

The vultures are already out. His interpreter stole money from him and gambled it away but somehow Ohtani was involved and is complicit. If he had a gambling addiction, it would've come to the fore before now.

-5 ( +4 / -9 )

The vultures are already out. His interpreter stole money from him and gambled it away but somehow Ohtani was involved and is complicit. 

I guess we’re supposed to believe that simple ol’ Shohei had no clue giant sums of money were disappearing from his account again, again, and again — because knowledge of any transfers would make Ohtani complicit in a crime.

9 ( +11 / -2 )

Ohtani likes a flutter.

Let's wait until the investigations by the authorities and MLB are complete.

Too many people here jumping to conclusions and wanting to crucify Ohtani. There is zero proof he has engaged in any illegal gambling.

-9 ( +2 / -11 )

Why do so many posters want Ohtani to take a fall from grace? Jealousy and envy.

-2 ( +9 / -11 )

There is zero proof he has engaged in any illegal gambling.

Other than huge sums of money being transferred from his account to a bookie in California, where sports betting is illegal.

4 ( +6 / -2 )

 I think Mizuhara was really the fall guy for him. Mizuhara has less to lose from this.

Less to lose? Just because they are in a different income bracket doesn't make his livelihood have less worth. Ippei's parents who run a restaurant in SoCal had to shut their doors. His wife unfollowed him on social media meaning she may be out the door. He may even go to prison for this. Nobody is going to hire him after this in Japan or in U.S. His only cash grab would be a tell all book but I doubt that happens.

4 ( +6 / -2 )

His only cash grab would be a tell all book but I doubt that happens.

Not outside the realms of possibility.

If the SHTF big time.

Who knows?

-1 ( +4 / -5 )

MilesTegToday  02:15 pm JST

The vultures are already out. His interpreter stole money from him and gambled it away but somehow Ohtani was involved and is complicit. If he had a gambling addiction, it would've come to the fore before now.

$4.5 million is not chump change. It's highly irregular and suspicious to not know that $4,500,000 is missing from your bank account.

You can't blame people for suspecting that Ohtani had his hand in this more than Mizutani is letting on.

3 ( +7 / -4 )

Tech stocks would have been a better bet.

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

In two other at-bats he hit towering drives to right just a few feet short of a home run.

This is just a more glorious way to say he flied out twice. I love Ohtani but the media needs to stop garnishing everything he does. Be a little more honest and straightforward.

It's not garnishing. He actually did hit two towering drives to right field just a few feet short of a home run.

That's what happened. It's the truth.

It's not a "glorious way" of saying anything. You are the one making it out to be.

-5 ( +1 / -6 )

By the way, no news in JT about the high scoring game last night? Or about how $300,000,000 contract Yamamoto got slapped with five runs in the first inning?

There's a separate JT story about that. This story is about the Ohtani/Mizuhara/gambling situation.

A pitcher who had never pitched a MLB game given a massive contract?

Hideo Nomo, Hideki Matsui, Ichiro, Hideki Irabu, Masahiro Tanaka, and other Japanese players were also given big contracts before they ever played a MLB game.

Yamamoto's big contract is thus nothing new. True, it's more money than those other guys, but salaries in the MLB are going up overall. That's been the course of it for decades.

And in the NHL, NFL, and NBA, even rookies -- guys who'd never played one shift, down, or second at any pro level -- have gotten big contracts. At least Yamamoto and the other Japanese players are all seasoned pros (in the NPB) before they go to MLB.

So I'm not sure why you're taking particular umbrage at Yamamoto's deal here.

Do I think it's crazy to give a guy a 12-year, 9-figure contract? Yes. But it's the Dodgers' money, not mine.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

A pitcher who had never pitched a MLB game given a massive contract?

Quo Primum - Hideo Nomo, Hideki Matsui, Ichiro, Hideki Irabu, Masahiro Tanaka, and other Japanese players were also given big contracts before they ever played a MLB game.

Yeah, but none of these players got nearly as much as Yamamoto.

He has the highest paid contract for any pitcher aside from Ohtani. BTW, Nomo was signed to the Dodgers farm team with a $2 million signing bonus and then brought up once he showed his mettle. This is a far cry from $300 million.

I don't have anything against Yamamoto and I've always liked him, but his spring training was lackluster and his outing last night was abysmal. A team throwing a ton of money on an unproven prospect is extremely poor management and a poor gamble.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

In the USA, there are tax issues from giving "no-interest" loans (even to friends), especially at that magnitude. There are also rules on the "gift tax", that limit how much of your own money you can give someone without it becoming a taxable event. There is a reason the USA Internal Revenue Service is looking at this, and it isn't because someone "lost" $5M. The IRS doesn't care about someone losing money. They do care about failing to report income or failing to report gifts or failing to properly account for "loans".

7 ( +7 / -0 )

This is the second time Mr. Ohtani is in financial trouble. He took money from a failed cryptocurrency company to hawk their product, and has been sued for fraud for promoting a Ponzi scheme. His defense was "I am Japanese and I do all my business in the Japanese language. I have no idea about English-language business. I just take the money people throw at me to advertise their products." Good luck with that, and good luck with telling everyone you and your accountant had no idea the interpreter was running off with $5M. This athlete has a team of lawyers and accountants (and agents). He and his lawyers are in self-preservation mode right now to claim there was a theft. It's the least damaging choice to the Ohtani brand. Throw your long-time friends under the bus. But Mr. Mizuhara has the scoop on everything Mr. Ohtani has been doing for the last six years. An orange jumpsuit will make Mr. Mizuhara rat Mr. Ohtani out pretty fast, maybe even halfway through this season.

5 ( +7 / -2 )

Othani would do better by asking for peace of absence,he is not able to handle the intense psychological pressure the Feds will bring to him, baseball should be the least if his worries

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

Won't he become "more perfect" now for helping a friend in need?

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

Asiaman7Today  02:30 pm JST

I guess we’re supposed to believe that simple ol’ Shohei had no clue giant sums of money were disappearing from his account again, again, and again — because knowledge of any transfers would make Ohtani complicit in a crime.

SpeedToday  03:49 pm JST

$4.5 million is not chump change. It's highly irregular and suspicious to not know that $4,500,000 is missing from your bank account.

You can't blame people for suspecting that Ohtani had his hand in this more than Mizutani is letting on.

What evidence do you have that he was involved?

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

It's kanpeki na hito

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Evidence is the money wire transfer,the IRS has open an investigation, Othani will be ask for an interview by the Feds

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Much ado about nothing. Who really cares what the real or wannabe super riches are doing? Important is only that the money is still existing in economy cycle, whether being spent by Ohtani, the other grey zone gambling guy or now as an asset or tax obligation at those online casinos. Besides of that we personally all won't see a dime of it, not if any pro baseball player cashes in and also not if then a company offers virtual gambling for them afterwards.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Leaving the Angels tarnished the Halo around Ohtani's head! Going to the Dodgers make him a person Dodging the law based on guilt by association. On another note it is very common where agents have access to players account, we don't know if Ohtani made his Ippei an agent someone who can have access to maybe one or more of his accounts. After all Ohtani said Ippei did grocery shopping for him and ran errands. The word "AGENT" depending on the contract between Ippei and Ohtani, and if there was one, gives the him rights to have access to certain things on the behalf of the Ohtani because he is providing a service for him. Perhap this is why Ohtani's lawyers are saying the money was "STOLEN", and this why the money was wired from Ohtani's account in his name because Ippei had access right to do such transaction as granted by Ohtani. Again maybe this is why he said Ohtani didn't do anything, but to save his on face after the feds tell you what you can be canned for, the thought and penalties as they all add up may have made him change his mind and lie. We don't know but will soon find out.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Kaim,you have freedom of speech and religion,but money is regulated by the government,you really do not have the freedom to use money in America, without regulation

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

“kanpeki no hito” — the perfect person.

When society/media put anyone on a pedestal, as night follow day, the fall and landing will be harsh, the consequences more profound.

I am sure Los Angeles Dodgers designated hitter Shohei Ohtani  just wishes to be recognised as an outstanding gifted sportsman, not the pontiff Holy Father celestial offspring.

Ohtani was an innocent victim to his close friend's gambling addiction.

Which clearly indicates Ohtani refrains from gambling period.

I do like a gamble, sometimes degenerately, I can also sense others that enjoy the odd flutter too.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

“kanpeki no hito” — the perfect person.

I think it should be kanpeki na hito.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Ohtani's 'perfect person' image could take a hit with firing of interpreter over gambling

Of course, but he’s well protected, he’ll survive. His career and his contract with the Dodgers will also survive. Maybe.

Mar. 22  07:51 am JST “ So Ohtani's friend/interpreter gets into trouble with gambling, and the bookie knowing that he works for Ohtani lets him get in deeper and deeper because maybe Mizuhara has boasted about his relationship with Ohtani. He wracks up 4.5 million in debts and then the bookie comes calling. Mizuhara doesn't have the money and he asks his friend, not boss as we know he was hired by the Dodgers, to help his out. Ohtani doesn't trust him with the money so he wires it to the bookie. 

What should have Ohtani done in this situation. Gone to the police? The Dodgers? This was his friend. I think he was trying to help out and being a bit naïve, thought by paying it off it would all go away. I don't see any crime here at all, and think a lot of people are jealous and would love to see him knocked down a peg. “

You were able to summarize this mess pretty well. Well, that’s what I would’ve said a couple of days ago. Now, we’re hearing some theories—one of those theories is that Mizuhara is taking the fall for Ohtani.

But about this “perfect person” image thing. That’s bs.

Mar. 22  09:28 am JST “ Amazing how people fall in love with some stars and think he or she is perfect just because they do something well and the press tells them. Kids, there is no such thing! He hits and throws a baseball very well, and, last time I checked he was a flawed human being, just like the rest of us. If he were an average baseball player, all the people here holding onto his jockstrap wouldn't give a damn nor call him perfect nor spend all of their breath defending him. “

Well said.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Since the Feds are involved and this is a possible crime, this thing is gonna get deeper and more things will come to light (compared to a typical MLB investigation)

Because sports betting is illegal in California, paying off a lost bet means you did bet

So if Ohtani knew about it, he can be considered an accessory. That's probably why the lawyers changed Mizuhara's story - the lawyers don't want a statement of admission that Ohtani knew. So the new story is that Ohtani did not know, and funds were stolen from him without his knowledge (ergo, a theft, instead of a loan)

2 ( +2 / -0 )

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