With baseball spring training in full swing, getting back into reading baseball books. This is one I found on Kindle Unlimited about the biggest name in the game today and it was decent.
“Sho-time: The Inside Story of Shohei Ohtani and the Greatest Baseball Season Ever Played” by Jeff Fletcher
3 of 5 stars (good)
Review: Even casual baseball fans are very familiar with the accomplishments of Shohei Ohtani, the most successful two-way -layer in the major leagues since Babe Ruth. This book by Jeff Fletcher on Ohtani’s historic 2021 season is a decent read with the best sections coming early in the book.
The best parts of the book are not about Ohtani’s time in the major leagues, at that point all with the Los Angeles Angels. Those are reserved for Ohtani’s time in Japan, when he played professionally for the Hokkaido Nippon-Ham Fighters. This was probably the most significant aspect of Ohtani’s professional baseball career because as soon as major league scouts discovered the talented pitcher and hitter, he had thoughts about not playing in Japan and going directly to America. However, after announcing that he was not going to play in Japan, that is what he ended up doing through 2017 before joining the Angels.
It is here that the book, although decent in the details written about Ohtani with the Angels, loses its luster for me and other passionate baseball fans because there really isn’t a lot about Ohtani in the book that hasn’t already been said or reported elsewhere. Nothing on the diamond or his injuries in 2019 or 2020 were new to me. The most interesting aspects of these chapters were about the marketing of Ohtani by the Angels and his work with different translators.
While there would not be too many people, even non-baseball fans, who don’t know who Ohtani is, this book would be best for those who fall into this category. As he now starts a new chapter in his career with the Los Angeles Dodgers, this book can be considered a decent recap of his time with the other Los Angeles team.