Archive > 11 October 2009

Will Kudoh Get a Shot?

» 11 October 2009 » In mlb prospects, nichibei, npb » 2 Comments

If 46-year old lefthander Kimiyasu Kudoh looks to MLB, will there be any takers?

In recent years we have seen veteran pitchers from Japan sign minor league deals and then contribute to the big league team. 39 year-old Masumi Kuwata made his major league debut with the Pittsburgh Pirates in 2007, and 40 year-old Ken Takahashi enjoyed his first season in the majors with the New York Mets this year.

Although neither pitcher left eye-popping numbers with their teams, they both brought intangibles to the table with experience and character. Needless to say, the Japanese media were all over stories, which in turn fueled stories in the US media (see Kuwata attracts crowd and The Mets’ 40-Year-Old Rookie).

Kudoh was released from the Yokohama Baystars and will be looking for a suitor this off-season. He stated his desire to continue playing and in a recent interview mentioned that NPB is his first option. However if negotiations stall and an offer from overseas arrives would he decline? It will be interesting how the situation plays out and if any MLB teams will look to follow the trend of signing Japanese veterans as roster depth.

To give you a sense of what Kudoh brings, check out pitching clip from September 16 versus Yakult, and this velocity chart from the same game..

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Twitter Weekly Updates for 2009-10-11

» 11 October 2009 » In Uncategorized » Comments Off

  • Marty Brown Done in Hiroshima: Hiroshima’s most recent loss eliminated the team from playoff convention, .. http://bit.ly/73d94 #
  • Ma-kun takes his 15th win: http://bit.ly/1AdWEr #
  • Kikuchi War Begins: Yusei Kikuchi completed his high school career and decision time is drawing near. He declar.. http://bit.ly/gbFID #
  • Ryota Igarashi Eyeing MLB: One of the few free agents in the NPB this off-season, Yakult fireballer Ryota Igara.. http://bit.ly/pvGRC #
  • Seibu Lions extends contract with Manager Watanabe Hisanobu for another two years and will expire after 2011: http://tinyurl.com/ydmztch #
  • Seibu Lions will not bring back Wasdin and Bokachika: http://bit.ly/jpCL8 #
  • NPB Bullet Points: Moves & Rumors: Only Japanese articles this morning:

    Aarom Baldiris has become expendable t.. http://bit.ly/1cGX9L #

  • Koji Mitsui Released, Likely to Try For MLB: Last year, Seibu Lions lefty Koji Mitsui became a historical footn.. http://bit.ly/LDcAW #
  • More on Kikuchi: If Yusei Kikuchi winds up choosing to sign with an MLB team, NPB is not going down without a f.. http://bit.ly/18v7ZL #
  • NPB’s Largest Indoor Facility Constructed: The Tokyo Yomiuri Giants opened up their new indoor practice f.. http://bit.ly/4Nyaw #

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NPB’s Largest Indoor Facility Constructed

» 11 October 2009 » In npb, sports business » Comments Off

The Tokyo Yomiuri Giants opened up their new indoor practice facility, realized by the partnership project celebrating the 60th anniversary ofYomiuri Land and the 75th anniversary ofthe Yomiuri Giants. The facility is now the largest among the NPB teams surpassing the recently structured Hanshin Tigers’ practice space.

NPB teams tend to be operated by big businesses, and media giant Yomiuri owing the Giants gives them an edge over the other teams financially as you can see in the 2009 NPB Team Payroll Ranking. With that said, the Tokyo Yomiuri Giants gain another advantage over other teams with the new indoor facility.

On another note, the Tokyo Yomiuri Giants started a page on their website allowing the fans to see the behind-the-scenes in a NPB atmosphere which I found interesting.

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