Sorting Through the Igarashi News
Update, Wednesday night: Igarashi has indeed signed with the Mets.
Yesterday, I passed along (via Twitter) a Sponichi report saying that the Red Sox were in the lead for Ryota Igarashi with a two-year deal worth $2-3m. This ran counter to the NY Times report from earlier in the day saying that Igarashi was near a deal with the Mets.
Twitter, being limited to 140 characters per post, doesn’t allow for much detail, so here’s some context from the Sponichi article:
- Igarashi spent a day training with Daisuke Matsuzaka in Arizona. Sponichi doesn’t mention this, but I’ve read elsewhere that they had planned to train together for two days.
- Igarashi got to ask Matsuzaka quite a bit about Boston’s camp and training programs. Said Igarashi: “the things we talked about were interesting, and I enjoyed it. I only know a little bit, but it’s totally different [from Japan]. It reduced my stress.”
- Sponichi also points out that “diving into a new environment on a team that already has three Japanese pitchers, Matsuzaka, Hideki Okajima, Junichi Tazawa is an appealing point.” This is a quote from the article, not Igarashi.
- This might be a function of the limitations of Twitter, but the term I translated as “Red Sox in the lead” comes across more directly as “Red Sox one step ahead”.
And a couple of other things to consider…
- Sports Hochi reported over the weekend that the countdown was running toward a deal with the Mets.
- Igarashi let it slip on his way to America that he had received multiple offers, including one from the team he was hoping to play for. Sponichi seems to be hinting pretty strongly that the team might be the Red Sox.
These are just my observations based on what’s been in the media — I don’t have my own sources on this one. As an observer, I could see this going either way. Both Boston and New York are appealing destinations, every team needs bullpen depth, and the dollar figures being reported are peanuts to either team.