Archive > 29 October 2009

2009 Draft: International Influence

» 29 October 2009 » In npb draft » Comments Off

My post on foreign players in the draft last year went over well, and I had meant to publish an update for 2009 prior to this year’s draft, but the gods of time weren’t on my side. In any case it’s not too late, so here’s a look at some players who brought a multicultural air to this year’s draft.

Pedro Okuda: Okuda is a third-generation Japanese Brazilian who came to Japan to play baseball. He made a name for himself in the 2007 Koshien tournament with a walk-off home run, but still didn’t get picked in yesterday’s draft.

Maike Magario: Magario is another Brazilian, though one who has grown up for most of his life in Japan. I haven’t seen much of Magario, but his build reminds me a little bit of Shawn Green. Yakult took Magario with their first ikusei pick. Note that Yakult also took Brazilian Rafael Fernandez in the ikusei draft last year, and operates an academy in Brazil.

Juanyoni Allan: Yet another Brazilian, I know even less about Allan than the previous two players – I don’t even know if I have the Romanization of his name correct. Draft reports indicates that he’s a big kid (196 cm, 100km; 6’5, 220lbs) who came to Japan with the goal of becoming a pro ballplayer. The report also says that he’s a power hitter who has seen time on the mound, but struggled with his command. Allan was not selected in the draft.

John Clayton Unten: clearly the best prospect of this bunch, Clayton was born to an American father and Japanese mother and attended high school in Okinawa. Shukan Baseball compares him to Seibu starter Takayuki Kishi, which I take a real compliment. Nippon Ham has become known for acquiring half-Japanese players (Yu Darvish, Romash Tasuku Dass, previously Micheal Nakamura as well), and indeed the Fighters drafted Unten in the fourth round.

Deanna has a full breakdown of who went where that goes into far more detail than I’ll get to. You’ll see more from me on the draft, though.

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Seibu Gets Kikuchi

» 29 October 2009 » In npb draft » 4 Comments

Despite the projections and comments in the media, ‘only’ six teams selected Yusei Kikuchi in the first round of this year’s draft, with the Seibu Lions winning the drawing and the rights to his NPB services. Hanshin, Yakult, Chunichi, Nippon Ham and Rakuten were the other teams that selected Kikuchi.

With half the league going after Kikuchi, the other six teams all got their picks uncontested. Orix (Shuichi Furukawa) and Hiroshima (Takeru Imamura) made pretty good picks in my opinion.

That’ll be all for me tonight, Gwynar is live-tweeting the draft and some nutbar is broadcasting it on justin.tv, though he has a bad habit of shouting into the mic and displaying an Excel sheet rather than the draft coverage.

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