Los Angeles Angels star Shohei Ohtani was expected to be the favorite for the American League Rookie of the Year award from the moment he signed his contract. After just 10 games, that prediction is starting to look conservative.
With his strong start, Ohtani has become the favorite to win the AL MVP award, according to one sportsbook. BetDSI lists Ohtani at +150 to win the award.
Yes, you’re reading that right. Ohtani is listed higher than Mike Trout, José Altuve and Giancarlo Stanton for the award right now. It’s quite the jump for Ohtani. Prior to the start of the season, BetDSI listed him at 100/1 to take home the AL MVP.
Given Ohtani’s lack of experience in the majors, those odds seem extreme. His performance, however, speaks volumes. At the plate, Ohtani has a .389/.421/.889 slash line with three home runs. On the mound, he carries a 2.08 ERA with 18 strikeouts.
Ohtani’s start on Sunday — in which he carried a perfect game into the seventh inning — has made him the talk of baseball. Based on his numbers, he has actually been one of the best players in baseball.
It’s still early, which is why many will take exception to Ohtani’s improved odds. He has to show he can produce at this level over a full major-league season. No one really knows how that will go. We have no idea whether fatigue will set in, or whether he can make the necessary adjustments once the league learns how to attack him.
Are these odds premature? Who cares? Ohtani has been excellent, and it will be fascinating to see whether he can keep this up all season.
Whether or not he wins the AL MVP, his starts are going to be entertaining. For everyone but Angels fans, entertaining is good enough.
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