Tuesday, December 20, 2011
Rangers "Win" Yu Darvish Sweepstakes
First off, lets get one thing out of the way. I LOVE the team name "Nippon Ham Fighters". I know that the nickname is just "Fighters", but I love to pretend its "Ham Fighters". Anyway....
Japanese stud and member of the Nippon Ham Fighters, Yu Darvish, is now off the market. The Texas Rangers have won the bidding rights to the young phenom for just over $51 Million dollars. That is just what they give Nippon Ham after the player has signed with the Rangers. They will still owe whatever they agree to pay Darvish.
Now, I like a hot foreign prospect as much as the next guy, and I'm all for Major League Baseball acquiring the best baseball talent in the world, but I can't help but feel the Rangers have overpaid for Darvish. Granted, we all saw him dominate in the World Baseball Classic, and how well he has done in Japan, but that doesn't always equal MLB production. In the WBC, even if the better guys play, they don't always give 100%, its just like extended Spring Training for some of them. In Japan, guys like Daisuke and Matsui have been would-be Hall of Famers, but get over here and can barely squeak into the All-Star Game.
Many have said Yu Darvish is a different kind of talent, and that could be true, but the only guy who has come to the states for Asia and made a significant impact on the game has been Ichiro, but he has also been crippling the Mariners Payroll for about a decade (well, him and Adrian Beltre), and been in the cellar of the AL West for a good chunk of that time.
Part of me hopes Yu Darvish pays off, I hope he becomes a Top 10 pitcher in baseball and watching him toe the slab every 5 days becomes must-see-tv. Somehow, though, I doubt that will happen. I see him being a solid 2nd or 3rd starter, making an All-Star Team or two, and having a good, if forgettable, career.
Oh, but if he can find a way to always have this sweet mustache, he is cool with me: