Angels reportedly had real chance to keep Shohei Ohtani, but let him go anyway

Why must Shohei Ohtani continue to torture Angels fans?

San Francisco Giants v Los Angeles Dodgers
San Francisco Giants v Los Angeles Dodgers / Christian Petersen/GettyImages

If you were to rank the low points for the Los Angeles Angels over the course of their history, having to watch Shohei Ohtani sign with the Dodgers would be up there. Sure, there have been worse Angels teams (you won't find many 1980 Angels highlights), but there is something truly savage about losing a guy as iconic as Ohtani.

The failure of the Angels while they had Ohtani and Trout, and Ohtani's subsequent free agency, will reverberate for a long time amongst fans. The only real solace Angels fans had was that it felt like it was inevitable that he was going to leave, despite the front office's last ditch attempt to keep him at the trade deadline last season.

Well, at least that is what we all thought until now. It was well-known that Ohtani took the $700 million offer with loads of deferred money to not only the Dodgers, but the Giants, Blue Jays, and Angels as well. The Giants and Blue Jays were amenable, but the Angels declined, presumably in order to move past a guy that seemed destined to play elsewhere regardless.

However, a recent report suggests that if the Angels had indeed agreed to those terms, Ohtani may have stayed with the Angels, which is yet another source of heartbreak for fans.

Confirmed: Ohtani was open to returning the LA Angels before they spurned him

The Angels flat out refusing to agree to Ohtani's terms was always a bit puzzling. Yes, $700 million is an absurd amount of money, but the Angels were well aware of how much cash Ohtani brings in, which would have offset a lot of that cost. But again, no big deal if he was always going to sign somewhere else, right?

The problem with that line of thinking is that, according to Jon Heyman's report, there remain those within the Angels organization that feel as though Ohtani would have come back if LAA had matched the offers he already had. Ohtani enjoyed the area and -- presumably -- playing for the Angels, but there wasn't much to talk about, unless the Angels were on board with actually paying him. As usual, Ohtani has remained mum on the subject.

Even with Ohtani's departure getting further and further away, it seems like there is always a new dagger that comes out to bring the pain back anew.

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