Ohtani discovers MC Hammer after hitting 100th home run

May 18th, 2022

This story was excerpted from Rhett Bollinger's Angels Beat newsletter. To read the full newsletter, click here. And subscribe to get it regularly in your inbox.

When Shohei Ohtani was honored by his teammates in the clubhouse after hitting his 100th career home run on Saturday, he not only received the ball he hit for his milestone homer, but one that may or may not have been signed by musician and Oakland legend MC Hammer.

Angels staff assistant Tim Buss, otherwise known as the "vice president of stuff" and the one responsible for coming up with the cowboy hat celebration after home runs, also came up with the idea of the MC Hammer “signed” ball. It made some sense, as MC Hammer was a batboy and clubhouse assistant at the Oakland Coliseum while growing up.

Angels manager Joe Maddon said Ohtani was mostly confused by the presentation, but once they blared MC Hammer’s hit, "U Can't Touch This," Ohtani laughed and celebrated with his teammates.

“MC Hammer has a great legendary tradition around here, and, of course, Shohei had a bemused look and had no idea what was going on,” Maddon said. “But then once we wrapped it up, they put the music on and now he knows who MC Hammer is."

Ohtani said he enjoyed the celebration and that he plans to keep both his home run ball and the one he received from Buss. He was given his home run ball in a special case, but he said he’s not sure where he’ll put it just yet. And while Ohtani had his doubts that the other ball was really signed by MC Hammer, he was happy to receive it anyway.

"Afterwards, I heard it was fake,” Ohtani said through interpreter Ippei Mizuhara. “Either way, I plan on keeping it."