Shohei Ohtani's adorable moment with his dad emerges as Father's Day takes over

Shohei Ohtani
Shohei Ohtani's adorable moment with his dad emerges as Father's Day takes over

A photo of Shohei Ohtani and his father from many years ago is making the rounds online. The 29-year-old slugger was very young when he attended an outing with his father and the picture often goes viral on Father's Day. The MLB's X account shared it to celebrate the occasion.

Ohtani is wearing a blue shirt, a light-colored cap and a wristband, while his father smiles next to him. Despite the height difference, the two Ohtanis were on the same level for this touching photo.

Flash forward to now and the slugger is set to line up for the Los Angeles Dodgers on Sunday against the Kansas City Royals. While his father and the rest of his family live in Japan, they often support him from across the ocean and were at his MLB debut, among other games.

It's unclear if Ohtani's father, Toru, will be in the stands for the Father's Day outing, in which his son will try and help the Dodgers get a series win, but Ohtani will have his support from wherever he is.

Shohei Ohtani's father was his primary coach

From elementary school to junior high school, Toru Ohtani was Shohei Ohtani's primary baseball coach. He was integral in shaping the eventual MVP-winner into the baseball player he has become.

Shohei Ohtani credited his father for coaching
Shohei Ohtani credited his father for coaching

Ohtani opened up on his father's impact in that role when speaking to Nippon (via People):

“Up until I reached high school, we probably spent more time together on the field than anywhere else. There was no special treatment. In practice and games, I didn’t think of him as my dad. He was first and foremost my coach.”

Ohtani admitted that having his father made him work harder and humbled him. The only guarantee was that Toru would be hard on the player, so he had to avoid any missteps.

“I was still young, but I knew my relationship with my dad wouldn’t guarantee me playing time. I had to earn a spot like everyone else or my teammates would cry foul. It taught me never to expect anything, but to work for it.”

Ohtani eventually worked his way into becoming one of the most dominant two-way players the baseball world has ever seen. He won two MVP awards in the American League with the Los Angeles Angels in the process.

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Edited by John Maxwell
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