Relax, Reds fans. It's over. Shohei Ohtani has made his decision, and has elected not to sign with the Chicago Cubs.
The most sought-after free agent since Bryce Harper has decided he's staying put...kind of. Ohtani will not be leaving Los Angeles. But rather than returning to the Angels, Ohtani reportedly agreed to a 10-year/$700-million deal with the Dodgers.
Ohtani was rumored to be on the Cubs radar this offseason. And while it would've eaten into Chicago's payroll quite a bit, seeing Ohtani on the hill and in the batters' box could have been a nightmare for the Cincinnati Reds and their fans.
Reds fans can exhale after Shohei Ohtani choose Dodgers over Cubs
It had been reported previously that the Chicago Cubs were no longer in the running to sign Shohei Ohtani despite their intial interest once the offseason began. The same was said about the Seattle Mariners.
However, Ohtani's camp had played things close to the vest throughout the winter to this point, so you never could quite eliminate the Cubs altogether.
As it turns out, however, Ohtani will be headed to the Los Angeles Dodgers. This year's AL MVP will be joining former MVPs in Mookie Betts and Freddie Freeman in LA's star-studded lineup.
This will surely thrust the Cubs, and several other big-market ball clubs, back into the free agent and trade markets. Just like the Reds, the Cubs have been linked to Tampa Bay Rays starting pitcher Tyler Glasnow.
It's now back to the drawing board for one of the Cincinnati Reds biggest rivals. The Chicago Cubs, much like Cincinnati, will be looking to upgrade their starting rotation.
The Reds have already signed three players to major league contracts this offseason while the Cubs have been waiting out Shohei Ohtani. Cincinnati has agreed to terms with pitchers Nick Martinez and Emilio Pagán, and have reportedly signed infielder Jeimer Candelario to a three-year deal as well.