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## MLB Update: Shohei Ohtani Denies Betting Scandal Involvement

### By Christian Arnold & Ryan Glasspiegel

#### Published: March 25, 2024
#### Updated: March 25, 2024, 8:19 p.m. ET

![Shohei Ohtani (r.) speaks to reporters on March 25, 2024. MLB Network](

Shohei Ohtani recently addressed the ongoing betting scandal involving his longtime interpreter, Ippei Mizuhara, expressing shock and sadness. Ohtani vehemently denied any involvement in Mizuhara’s alleged gambling debts, stating that he has never placed bets on baseball or any other sports.

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Ohtani made these statements at Dodgers Stadium before an exhibition game against the Angels, opting not to take questions from the media. This marks his first public remarks since the scandal emerged, with Ohtani detailing how he was unaware of Mizuhara’s activities until recently.

![Shohei Ohtani (r.) and fired interpreter Ippei Mizuhara (l.) in the Dodgers dugout during a game against the Padres in Seoul, South Korea on March 21, 2024.](image-url)

The situation unravelled during a team meeting following a game against the Padres in Seoul, South Korea. Ohtani’s lawyers have characterized him as a victim of significant financial fraud perpetrated by Mizuhara. The matter gained attention after reports surfaced regarding Mizuhara’s substantial debts and alleged misappropriation of funds from Ohtani’s account.

Further investigation revealed discrepancies in Mizuhara’s background, including false educational and professional claims. Ohtani’s confirmation of Mizuhara’s deceitful actions shed light on the interpreter’s attempts to mislead both Ohtani and his legal team.

![Los Angeles Dodgers designated hitter Shohei Ohtani (17) holds a bat in the dugout prior to the game against the Los Angeles Angels at Dodger Stadium. Kiyoshi Mio-USA TODAY Sports](image-url)

Despite Mizuhara’s admission to betting on sports apart from baseball, Ohtani remains resolute in his stance. The Dodgers star emphasized his disappointment in Mizuhara’s betrayal of trust and his focus on remedying the situation.

Ohtani’s recent $700 million deal with the Dodgers has been somewhat overshadowed by this scandal, where a significant portion of the contract’s value is deferred. The aftermath of this controversy underscores the importance of transparency and due diligence in professional collaborations.

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