(670 The Score) White Sox television analyst and South Euclid native Steve Stone has been a part of Major League Baseball for more than five decades, beginning as a player in 1971. He knows the game in and out, and his appreciation for a player’s talent is certainly notable.
This week, Stone got to watch a player he greatly admires in Angels two-way superstar Shohei Ohtani – who hit a pair of home runs during his team’s 12-5 win over the White Sox on Wednesday afternoon. Ohtani has 15 home runs, 38 RBIs and an .882 OPS while also going 5-1 with a 2.91 ERA on the mound this season. He won the American League MVP award in 2021 and is a two-time All-Star selection.
In Stone's mind, the Ohtani's greatness is comparable to Bulls legend Michael Jordan, as he explained on the Bernstein & Holmes Show on Thursday afternoon in Chicago.
“Everybody when they try to evaluate Ohtani says, ‘Well, he hasn’t won championships, he hasn’t won World Series,’" Stone said. "Let’s just look at what he is instead of what he hasn’t done. This is a guy the likes of which you probably won’t see again, at least for a long time. Because he can steal bases. He can hit the ball eight miles. He can probably play the field, but they choose not to because the guy has to go out and pitch every five to six days. He’s dominant as a pitcher. His stuff is overwhelming. And you just don’t see anything like him.
“Jordan dominated his era of basketball and is, in my estimation, the greatest basketball player of all time. Now, people will argue that there are a lot of great players that have played on an NBA court. I’m just partial to Michael because I got a chance to see him play at the old (Chicago) Stadium. As far as Ohtani is concerned, he’s the best player in the major leagues because he dominates at two things that people have a hard time dominating at all – which is a dominant hitter and a dominant pitcher at the same time, all wrapped into one. A guy who is 6-4, 225 pounds, runs like the wind, can steal as many bases as he’d like to steal – maybe 30 to 40 bases.
“Ohtani is something special. He's just a pleasure to watch. I really revere talent. When you look at him, you just don’t see that kind of talent anywhere.”