TEMPE, Ariz. — Shohei Ohtani doesn’t just drive the ball anymore.
The Los Angeles Angels‘ two-way star said he got his California driver’s license in the offseason, putting the 25-year-old behind the wheel of a car for the first time.
“I’m enjoying it,” Ohtani said through his interpreter Saturday after rolling up to the Angels’ spring training complex in his Tesla. “I was able to pass it the first time, so, not too much stress.”
Ohtani never got a license in his native Japan because the process is longer and more expensive, and he didn’t need to drive himself anywhere in Sapporo thanks to public transportation and his team. Since he joined the Angels in 2018 and moved to car-centric Southern California, he had been driven around by other people.
Ohtani said he thinks he’s a “pretty good” driver already, although he still hasn’t driven onto the Los Angeles area’s famous freeways by himself.
With his recovery from Tommy John surgery in its final stages, Ohtani has plenty of other work to do this spring as he prepares to return to the Angels’ rotation in mid-May.
Ohtani will be able to hit for the Halos from the opening game of spring, but manager Joe Maddon has said the team is…