Darvish hints at MLB dreams

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Via NPB Tracker, Japanese starter Yu Darvish recently hinted at wanting to one day play in the States, saying “well, I’m planning on climbing the ladder, step by step,” when asked about his interest in MLB. This wouldn’t be that big of deal normally, since he’s not eligible for free agency until after the 2014 season and would need his team to making him available via the posting process to come across the Pacific earlier, but the Yankees are sending a scout to watch Darvish’s start this weekend, and it’s not the first time they’ve scouted him either (Gene Michael went to see him in 2008).

The 23-year-old Darvish has a 2.20 ERA (~3.04 FIP) and a 3.01 K/BB ratio in on 111 career starts for the Nippon Ham Fighters, and his past three seasons were better than any one of Daisuke Matsuzaka’s. He threw close to 750 innings before his 22nd birthday, so they haven’t exactly taken it easy on him. NPB Tracker’s Patrick Newman told us why Darvish will be successful in the big leagues in a piece for FanGraphs. I’m sure this won’t be the last time we hear about this.

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AL East Preview: Boston Red Sox
Open Thread: My RAB Fantasy Baseball League Team
  • http://yanksdraftsandprospects.blogspot.com/ Jake H

    Big stein just needs to buy the team and sell Darvish to us. Get it done big stein!

    • Jack

      Jeter wants to be an owner, right?

  • Andy in Sunny Daytona

    YUUUUUUUUUUU!!!!! His nickname in the States has to be Soulja Boy.

  • Templeton “Brendog” Peck

    his arm very well could have become putty by the time he makes it to free agency in 2014

    • Rick in Boston

      Yeah, that’s my big concern with any high-profile Japanese pitcher. The abuse they take in high school and college makes Rice’s program look benign by comparison.

  • Matt M.

    OOOO maybe by the time Mo retires, joba will be the closer and we can stunt yu by making him pitch only in teh 8th inning!!11!1!

  • pat

    Dice-K allegedly had 5 or 6 plus pitches too.

    • http://yanksdraftsandprospects.blogspot.com/ Jake H

      He had the super gyro ball that drills holes in bats when it touches it. Haven’t you seen it?

    • Section 39

      Dice-K’s issue is not his quality of pitches, but rather that he is hurt ALL THE TIME. He is a good pitcher when healthy, but he can’t stay healthy. Darvish has the highest projection of any Japanese pitcher ever, I don’t think we should be concerned about quality with him.

  • http://i.cdn.turner.com/si/multimedia/photo_gallery/0902/mlb.alex.rodriguez.through.the.years/images/1993.alex-rodriguez.jpg Drew

    He threw close to 750 innings before his 22nd birthday.

    So he’s ready for the 8th?

    He’d command more than Dice, this could get fun.

    • mustang

      Still having a hard time with it I see.

    • Rogue Trader

      Do us all a favor and remove your router & turn off your computer

      • Trade Joba

        After you.

  • mustang

    “He threw close to 750 innings before his 22nd birthday”

    They obviously haven’t heard of the Joba’s rules what kind of league are they running their anyway.

    • pete

      a league that hasn’t produced a particularly good MLB starting pitcher in its entire history

      • mustang

        Good point and you kept it all within one computer screen didn’t even have to scroll down.
        +2.

      • Accent Shallow

        Fun fact: Hideo Nomo has by far the most games started of any players born in Japan. (And he had some excellent years, back there)

        Also, maybe Masanori Murakami had stayed in America, maybe he’s worthwhile.

        (Seriously, check it out. The man had some pretty nice rate stats and still posted a slightly below average ERA in 1965)

  • RobC

    So what is to stop him from playing in the MLB now?
    Can’t he just pack his bags and leave Japan for a US team?
    Millions of people left their homeland for the USA he can be one of many.
    He may not exactly be one of the huddled masses Lady Liberty speaks of but the idea is the same.

  • James Wu

    just wondering if any MLB team is currently interested in Wei-Yin Chen? He seems to be eligible for MLB next year.

    He is from Taiwan and has pitched very well for Chunichi Dragons in recent 2 years. His ERA was lowest among all elite pitchers in 2009.

    Check this out: http://www.baseball-reference......i-Yin_Chen

    • Section 39

      Oooh, another Taiwanese pitcher… I can’t wait…