Shohei Ohtani surprises wife of new Dodgers teammate Joe Kelly with a Porsche

Christmas came a couple of days early for Joe Kelly’s wife, Ashley, courtesy of Kelly’s new Dodgers teammate Shohei Ohtani.

The Kellys were surprised at their Southern California home on Thursday with the delivery of a new Porsche — purchased for Ashley by Ohtani. 

Just like Ohtani has set a new standard for on-field excellence among MLB stars, he has also set a new standard for the customary gift that a player gives a new teammate in exchange for his jersey number. Joe Kelly wore No. 17 with the Dodgers last season.

But Ohtani’s gift for Ashley is also a nod to the campaign she waged on social media after her husband had agreed to re-sign with the Dodgers — and while Ohtani was still deciding which team he would sign with in one of the most impactful free-agency decisions in modern MLB history.

[Why did Shohei Ohtani pick the Dodgers? 5 things we learned from his intro presser]

Ashley’s hilarious — and ultimately successful — #Ohtake17 videos showed her offering to donate all her custom Dodgers No. 17 merchandise to Ohtani if he decided to sign with the team, even hilariously renaming her and Joe’s youngest son Kai to “ShoKai” as an enticement.

Ashley later posted a celebratory video after Ohtani announced he would in fact sign with the Dodgers — revealing her husband’s new No. 99 in the process.

Apparently, Ohtani took notice, even though Joe Kelly told Dodgers radio host David Vassegh that he never actually asked his new superstar teammate for anything in return for the jersey number.

It’s just the latest example of Ohtani going above and beyond with his new teammates in his first few weeks as a Dodger. His contract not only includes an unprecedented amount of deferred money so the team has as much payroll flexibility as possible to build a contender around him, but he’s also taken an active role in recruiting other stars to L.A.

Ohtani recorded a video message for Tyler Glasnow as the Dodgers were negotiating a trade and extension for the onetime Tampa Bay Rays ace, and he was part of the team’s free agent meeting at Dodger Stadium with his World Baseball Classic teammate, Yoshinobu Yamamoto.

Both of those recruiting moves paid off — Yamamoto and Glasnow will now headline a suddenly loaded 2024 Dodgers starting rotation that figures to get even better the following season when Ohtani returns to the mound after recovering from the torn UCL he suffered in 2023. 

Ohtani and Yamamoto even celebrated their new chapter with the Dodgers on Saturday night, going out to dinner at Matsuhisa Beverly Hills as guests of famed Japanese chef Nobu Matsuhisa.

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