Shohei Ohtani & Dodgers Free Agent Target Yoshinobu Yamamoto Not Attending Rams Game

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Shohei Ohtani and Los Angeles Dodgers free agent target Yoshinobu Yamamoto are not attending Thursday night’s game between the New Orleans Saints and Los Angeles Rams.

A league source had confirmed to Daniel Starkand of that the Rams were expecting Ohtani and Yamamoto to be among the professional athletes and celebrities in attendance at SoFi Stadium for the pivotal matchup. However, celebrity lists for sporting events often are subject to change, and Yamamoto no longer is going to be on hand.

Ohtani has previously been on the Rams’ celebrity list for a home game as well, only to not attend.

It’s unclear if Ohtani still plans to go Thursday night as the Rams and Saints both enter at 7-7 and fighting for playoff spots in the NFC after surprising turnarounds this season.

The Dodgers are among the finalists looking to sign Yamamoto. The team reportedly is considering a contract offer upwards of $300 million for Yamamoto, who has a deadline of January 4, 2024, to sign with a team.

The Philadelphia Phillies, San Francisco Giants, New York Mets, Toronto Blue Jays, Boston Red Sox and New York Yankees are thought to still be part of the Yamamoto sweepstakes as well.

Ohtani and Yamamoto share a friendship from their time playing on Team Japan, and were already together earlier this month when the Dodgers hosted the right-hander at Dodger Stadium. Ohtani’s involvement and presence was said to be a significant factor for Yamamoto.

When will Yoshinobu Yamamoto sign?

There was an initial expectation that Yamamoto would sign with a team before Christmas, but more recently a sentiment has emerged that his decision will not come until closer to the New Year.

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