Let’s check in on Kenta Maeda’s offseason, shall we?

In his native Japan, Maeda decided to play a practical joke on his proteges during a game show. Maeda dresses as an old man and adopts all the stereotypical traits, including a lackadaisical walk, poor posture and an impressively on-point mask.

Maeda took the mound as his alter ego, and to the surprise of the children, demonstrated a dominant performance that would’ve made Clayton Kershaw blush. Apparently Maeda’s delivery wasn’t a giveaway.

The 28-year-old eventually undisguised himself to the roar of cheers.

Coming off an overall impressive rookie season, the Dodgers expect Maeda to improve his stamina in 2017. The right-hander made 32 starts, and despite the team’s efforts to implement a system similar to what Maeda followed in Japan, he faded down the stretch. The deterioration was especially felt in the playoffs, when Maeda was tagged for eight runs in 10.2 innings (three starts). He is expected to be the team’s No. 3 starter behind Kershaw and Rich Hill.

The entire prank, along with a behind-the-scenes look, can be viewed here.

The Dodgers aren’t afraid to spend.

About The Author

News Desk

Gabe Burns is an award-winning journalist. He serves as a reporter and editor at the DodgersNation news desk. He additionally works as editor-in-chief of The Spectator, Valdosta State University's student paper. Gabe's work has been featured on a number of platforms, including Draft Breakdown and Pro Football Spot. His byline has been cited in media such as the New York Times, Los Angeles Times and Chicago Tribune. Aside from covering Dodgers baseball, Gabe enjoys watching the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Orlando Magic and Tampa Bay Lightning. He can be followed on Twitter at @GabeBurns_DN.

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