Red Sox News & Links: The Ohtani Gambling Scandal is Our Fault!

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Well, the regular season hasn’t even really started yet, but we already know what the biggest baseball story of 2024 is going to be (off the field, anyway). And while you might not think that the developing scandal surrounding gambling debts linked to Shohei Ohtani and his longtime interpreter/friend/confidant Ippei Mizuhara has anything to do with the Red Sox, you’re wrong! Everything is about the Red Sox all the time!

After attending college in the US, Ippei actually got his first interpreting gig back in 2010, when he served as the interpreter for Red Sox reliever Hideki Okajima. Three years later, the Hokkaido Nippon Ham Fighters hired him to interpret for yet another Red Sox reliever, Cy Young vote-getter Chris Martin. It was at that point that he met a hot shot Fighters rookie named Shohei Ohtani. (LA Times)

I’ll let one of the meme kings of the Pod on Lansdowne crew take it from here:

And guess what: that’s not the only news we have from the crime blotter today! There’s been a new arrest in the David Ortiz shooting case. (Tanya Alanez, Boston Globe)

One more thing from the unsavory characters desk: Curt Schilling will NOT be in attendance for the celebration of the 2004 World Series team on Opening Day at Fenway. Tax-payers of Rhode Island rejoice (along with a lot of other people). (Dan Shaughnessy, Boston Globe)

In actual baseball news, Chis Martin is progressing from the groin tightness that has so far stalled his spring. He’s even showing impressive velocity gains. (Christopher Smith, MassLive)

Meanwhile, Garrett Whitlock pitched a weird is this really a game? game on a backfield against Twins minor leaguers yesterday and reportedly dominated the lineup while showing off his tweaked arsenal. (Alex Speier, Boston Globe)

But it won’t be Whitlock who starts on Opening Day in Seattle. That honor is officially being handed to Brayan Bello, who will be the youngest Red Sox pitcher to start the opener since Aaron Sele. (Christopher Smith, MassLive)

Jarren Duran will likely be starting on Opening Day as well, and some are looking to him to be the team’s secret weapon this year. (Jen McCaffrey, The Athletic)

Triston Casas isn’t much of a secret, but we’re all hoping he will be a weapon. We’re also hoping he’ll be in Boston for a very long time, but he gave yet another update on contract talks and it doesn’t look like an extension is coming any time soon. (Rob Bradford, WEEI)

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