Myworld is spending the night in a city near the airport by the name of Taoyuan. We get on a 6 A.M. flight for the United States tomorrow. Posts will resume when myworld arrives stateside.
Some thoughts until then:
It appears that the Yomiuri Giants have signed Scott Mattieson after the Phillies released him. We’ve always liked Scott and just when he was about to make the starting rotation of the Phillies he required arm surgery. Because of all his arm ailments the Phillies moved him to their bullpen. He has a fastball that registers in the mid-90s, but at 27 he should have been promoted to the major leagues a couple years ago. The Phillies pen has always been their weak spot, but Scott, sitting right in their back yard was never called up except for September appearances. Whenever he was called up he didn’t do well. Perhaps a change of scenery is required for him to succeed and if that is the case the Yomiuri Giants have an excellent bullpen man. I’d have second thoughts about making him a closer right away and first give him an opportunity just to have some success.
There is some talk about Korea hosting the Asian Series next year. Japan has already indicated that they will not host it because there are no sponsors willing to take on the financial responsibilities. There is some concern with whether Korea has the facilities to even host such an event. As defending champions, Korea would certainly like to see this series continued, especially with the popularity of baseball in Korea last year.
Hiroyuki Nakajima has been posted and teams have until Friday to bid on him. It will be interesting to see what the high bid is and whether Seibu will accept the bid if they consider it too low. The Baltimore Orioles and the San Francisco Giants are said to be the most likely bidders. Only San Francisco has a position at short that is available for Nakajima to take.
This seems to be a very active year for Japanese posted players and free agents. The NPB has been in the red and created a third all star game this year just to bring in additional revenue. Perhaps the posting process of their better players is an additional step to bring in revenue. For the NPB, they would have to hope that the posting of their stars will not dilute the talent level in the NPB to the extent that the fans stop attending. This is the most talent they will lose in one year that myworld can remember, assuming that Yu Darvish posts and the free agents sign major league contracts and are not enticed back to the NPB with contracts from a respective team in the NPB.