Fantasy Owners of Shohei Ohtani face a roster dilemma on a weekly basis; whether to start the superstar at a hitting roster position or pitching roster position. Ohtani provides all-star play both in the batter’s box and on the mound. With only one opportunity to edit rosters per week in Fantasy Baseball, where should owners start Ohtani?
Ohtani at Bat
Shohei Ohtani is one of the most prolific hitters of this generation. The way Ohtani can elevate the ball from any position in the strike zone is truly unique. Ohtani sports a “golf-like” swing and quite literally “tee’s off” on opposing pitchers.
Last year, Ohtani had 586 at bats, had 160 hits, provided 95 runs batted in, and 34 home runs. Ohtani finished as the runner up for the AL MVP award, and fantasy owners should expect the superstar to continue that dominant form he presented in 2022.
Further, Ohtani’s season in 2022 was a slight step back from his 2021 season, where he had 537 at bats, provided 138 hits for 100 runs batted in and 46 home runs. Fantasy owners that drafted Ohtani may have even gotten a short price on him this season and could stand to benefit from an improved and more comfortable Shohei Ohtani in the batter’s box.
Ohtani On the Mound
Ohtani was spectacular on the mound in 2022. Last year, Ohtani started 28 games and completed 166.0 innings for a record of 15 wins and 9 losses – on an Angels team that was struggling to win games last season. Ohtani’s Wins above replacement was 6.1. Ohtani sported a fantastic 2.33 ERA to go with a 1.01 WHIP.
The Angels are projected to be a better overall team this season and Ohtani should receive heavy respect from sportsbooks when he’s on the mound – fantasy owners should feel like Ohtani has a 65% chance to win when he takes the mound. Ohtani, after all, had a .625 win percentage last year with an Angels team that struggled to produce runs outside of Ohtani’s all-star play.
What Should Fantasy Owners Do with Ohtani?
Fantasy owners need to start Shohei Ohtani in an offensive roster position. The offensive statistics that Ohtani provides on an almost every-game basis isn’t something fantasy owners can pass up on with only one opportunity to edit their lineups per week. Ohtani, at maximum, would receive 2 starts in a fantasy week, and the pitching schedule would need to line up perfectly for that to happen.
Fantasy owners of Ohtani need to realize his value and place among the offensive powerhouses in the league and should start him as such. Ohtani’s dual threat as a pitcher gives owners another option if a star pitcher on their team suffers an injury.