Tag Archive > Ken Kadokura

Cubs Sign Kadokura

» 19 January 2009 » In mlb prospects » 1 Comment

According to the venerable Baseball America, the Cubs have signed former Yomiuri Giant Ken Kadokura to a minor league contract. I’m sure Kadokura will get a spring training invite and chance to compete for a bullpen spot.

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Yet Another Minor Leaguer to Attempt a Move to MLB

» 11 January 2009 » In mlb prospects » 1 Comment

Former SoftBank Hawks pitcher Michinao Yamamura is the latest released NPB minor leaguer to announce he’s taking a shot at signing on with an American organization. He’ll be flying to Arizona on the 25th to spend 4 days playing winter league games and trying out. “My agent is talking to a number of teams about a minor league contract. Ever since I threw in international games in college, going overseas has been a dream,” said the righthander. Yamamura, 30, has made 25 appearances at the top level in Japan, going 2-2 with a 3.58 era in 27 2/3 innings.

I can’t remember ever hearing about this many released  minor leaguers attempting to move to MLB organizations in a single offseason. Perhaps I’m paying more attention this year.

So far, I’ve come across:

All of these players have been released by their NPB organizations. With the exception of Kadokura, Noguchi, and Maekawa, none of them spent that much time at the top level in Japan. Even if they are signed, most of these guys are more likely to be organizational players rather than actual MLB prospects, but it’s still an interesting trend.

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On The Comeback Trail

» 27 December 2008 » In mlb prospects, nichibei » 1 Comment

Akinori Otsuka is in the news again. He’s planning to work out in front of all 30 MLB teams in Arizona next month. Padres GM Kevin Towers was quoted in Sports Hochi last week as saying he’d like to sign Otsuka if his elbow is okay. Otsuka was one of the best relievers in NPB history and had four solid MLB seasons, so unless his arm is about to fall off I’m guessing he’ll got a shot somewhere. It’s actually a little surprising that no one signed him for last season; he could have been had for a cheap two-year deal where he could have spent the first year rehabbing under team supervision. I guess no one wanted to take that kind of chance on his health. Otsuka (I believe) still has a residence in San Diego, so the Padres would be a logical destination. I threw out the idea a couple of weeks ago that he could sign with Seattle, as he has a good relationship with Don Wakamatsu from their days in Texas.

In other comeback news, Yomiuri Giants castaways Ken Kadokura and Shigeki Noguchi both worked out for a Cubs representative on Dec 23. Sports Hochi thinks that Kadokura has a shot at signing with the Chicago. Last we heard, Kadokura had an offer from SK in the Korean League, but now he’s saying that he wants to play in America. Noguchi, who failed a tryout with Rakuten last month, will retire if he doesn’t get a chance to play with an American organization. So far neither player has heard back from the Cubs.

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NPB Bullet Points (2008/12/21)

» 21 December 2008 » In npb » 1 Comment

Time to revive this series… Japanese articles only today

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