Tag:Yu Darvish
Posted on: December 16, 2010 12:29 am

Darvish changing mind about majors?

Could Yu Darvish be on the way to the States?

Previously, Darvish had announced he was staying in Japan one more year, as Japan's best pitcher is going through divorce proceedings.

However, Darvish tweeted to the masses that "The situation has changed a little. Actually, a lot. Don't know what's going to happen." (Translation via Yakyubaka.com .)

What does this mean? Could it mean Darvish has changed his mind about heading to the states?

One has to think that Darvish may have gotten word of Cliff Lee jilting the Yankees... and perhaps it was made known to him that he could be in line for a major windfall should the Yankees end up bidding for his services via the posting system. Of course, if Darvish was to be posted, you'd have to expect the Rangers, plus even the Nationals, Angels and other clubs in the thick for his services.

Hang tight. If Darvish does indeed get posted, this Hot Stove season is far from over.

-- Evan Brunell

For more baseball news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsmlb  on Twitter or subscribe to the RSS feed.

Category: MLB
Tags: Japan, Yu Darvish
Posted on: December 14, 2010 6:07 pm

Where do Yankees go from here?

Zambrano Now that the Yankees have lost out on Cliff Lee, who could the club go after?

Well, for starters, the club has agreed to a minor-league contract with Mark Prior. Who knows, it could work out. But probably not.

Good thing there's always Andy Pettitte. The Yankees could up their offer to entice him out of retirement, but even with Pettitte, the Yankees are seeking a strong option for the rotation. Right now, it would be comprised of CC Sabathia, A.J. Burnett, Phil Hughes, Ivan Nova and... who knows, maybe Sergio Mitre?

Carl Pavano is the only starter left on the market that fits the bill. Any other starter would fill in at the back of the rotation, while Pavano would make a strong case to be the No. 3. One problem: The Yankees and the fans have already had their fill of Pavano. However, New York did give Javier Vazquez a second try, so you never know.

Other options reside in trade. There's obviously Zack Greinke, but there are too many reports that New York doesn't have what it takes to acquire Greinke, plus there's far too many questions on whether Greinke would even want to pitch in New York, nevermind if he could.

Other trade options include the White Sox and Gavin Floyd as the club has been willing to listen on the righty. You can bet the ChiSox would also love to listen to deals involving Edwin Jackson as Jackson was only acquired in a desperate gambit to land Adam Dunn from Washington in what remains a curious decision from the Nats in passing. However, is Jackson better than what's left on the free agent market sans Pavano? Mmm... probably not.

The name of Ricky Nolasco is also making the rounds, but Florida has said it has no plans to move Nolasco even with the two sides struggling to agree to a contract extension.

Perhaps the Cubs could be enticed to part with Carlos Zambrano (pictured). It's no secret the two sides are tired of each other, but Big Z has a hefty contract and blew away the competition near the end of 2010, so would require a strong package in return. Still, the Yankees have the money and perhaps the will to pry Zambrano away.

Past that, the Yankees could come calling for Matt Garza or James Shields, although the Rays may not want to deal within the division. Jesus Montero may be enough to change their minds.

Another option New York has is to slot in with an average pitcher and wait until 2012 to make their move for a top starter.

Problem: Unless Philadelphia declines Roy Oswalt's 2012 option, the best starter on the market is C.J. Wilson. And granted, if Wilson repeats his 2010 season, he'll be an enticing name. But that should tell you all there is to know about 2012's free-agent market.

Except there's one very important person in the Pacific that will be posted and could make major waves.

That's Yu Darvish, who has opted to stay in Japan one more season but has essentially conceded he is headed east for 2012. The Yankees -- as well as any other team -- would love to get Darvish's services, and you can bet New York will be hot to trot after the righty.

But so will any number of teams such as Washington and the Angels, so Darvish to the Yankees isn't quite a sure thing. And no, simply expecting New York to outbid everyone in the posting process is not a sure thing. For one, the Red Sox blew the Yankees away for Daisuke Matsuzaka. And second, the Oakland A's not agreeing to terms with Hisashi Iwakuma in what some believe was a gambit to keep him away from the Rangers underscored a flaw in the posting system. That is, you can bid any amount for the player but do not have to pay the fee if no terms are agreed to.

What's stopping Boston from bidding an outrageous $100 million fee (double Matsuzaka's fee) and then just simply letting him walk away?

This much is clear: the Yankees have a lot on their hands to build their rotation now that the Cliff Lee saga has ended.

-- Evan Brunell

For more baseball news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsmlb  on Twitter or subscribe to the RSS feed.

Posted on: November 4, 2010 10:37 am
Edited on: November 4, 2010 4:46 pm

Darvish expects to play in majors in 2012

Darvish The best pitcher in Japan turned some heads when he announced he was returning to Japan for another season.

However, David Lennon of Newsday reports the reason Yu Darvish is remaining in the country another year is because he is in the midst of a divorce. Once all that is settled, Darvish will jump to the States in time for 2012.

The 24-year-old has a career 2.12 ERA in 1,036 1/3 innings for the Nippon Ham Fighters, punching out 974. He made his professional debut at age 18, starting 14 games with a 3.53 ERA. His ERA has not been higher than 1.88 over the last four seasons, going 12-8 in 25 starts in 2010, completing 10 games for a 1.78 ERA and 222 whiffs in 202 innings.

Darvish throws a 91-94 mph fastball along with a hard slider, and mixes in a two-seam fastball, curveball, split-fingered fastball, cut-fastball and changeup. He previously threw a screwball until getting injured in 2006 and scrapping the pitch, developing the splitter instead.

 He will likely be asked to reduce the amount of pitches he throws so he can throw four quality pitches instead of two quality pitches and five okay pitches. Daisuke Matsuzaka underwent the same transition when he arrived in the majors.

Darvis could easily clear Dice-K's record posting fee of $51.1 million, and as Lennon points out, the timing could be perfect for the Mets to be players as they will have cleared out all of their lucrative contracts except Johan Santana -- and given Santana will have just two years left on his contract, it should not factor into their chase of Darvish.

The Diamondbacks were reportedly willing to offer up to $80 million for Darvish's services, including posting fee and contract. For a market like Arizona, it's an impressive number. The Nationals are also interested in Darvish , but those are the only public teams known at this point. However, expect all 30 teams to be interested in Darvish, with only the price of the posting fee reducing the pool of contenders for the Persian's services.

It is not yet known whether King Leonidas will put in a bid himself.

-- Evan Brunell

For more baseball news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsmlb on Twitter or subscribe to the RSS feed.

Category: MLB
Posted on: October 19, 2010 9:16 am

Yu Darvish to stay in Japan one more year

Yu Darvish Baseball will have to wait one more year for a bona fide ace to make his way from Japan to the states.

No, Hisashi Iwakuma's posting wasn't pulled back. Rather, the best pitcher Japan has to offer these days announced he was returning to the Nippon Ham Fighters for a seventh season, as yakyubaya.com translates from Darvish's blog .

"A lot has been mentions [sic] about the Majors," the translation reads. Next season... I will be wearing a Nippon-Ham Fighters uniform."

Even though Darvish (photo courtesy NPB) plans to stay at home, it's ineviable that the Persian Japanese eventually heads to MLB, even as he remains loyal to staying home. In Japan, he's become one of the richest players to ever play and earned 330 million yen in 2010 -- the youngest to ever break the 300-million yen mark while becoming the highest-paid pitcher in the Pacific League.

But 330 million yen is nothing compared to what he could make in America as the dollar value of 330 million yen is a Oct. 19 value of $4 million.

A Japanese sports daily newspaper named Sponichi reported last week that the Diamondbacks were prepared to spend up to $80 million on the right-hander, as NPB Tracker passes along. This would cover both the posting fee and contract.

Given Arizona doesn't have the finances like the Red Sox to eventually guarantee $100 million overall for the services of Daisuke Matsuzaka, plus Matsuzaka's poor play has reduced the demand for Japanese pitchers, $80 million is quite a bit to offer.

Darvish made 26 starts for Nippon-Ham in 2010, hurling 202 innings, throwing 10 complete games with an ERA of 1.78. He whiffed 222 and walked 47, holding batters to just five home runs. While his control would likely take a step back, Darvish is only 24 and has the talent to emerge as an ace in America.

-- Evan Brunell

For more baseball news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsmlb on Twitter or subscribe to the RSS feed .
Category: MLB
Posted on: October 1, 2010 9:23 pm

Nats interested in Webb, Darvish

Yu Darvish The Nationals have already made it known they're searching for a possible No. 1 starter -- and it appears they'll look everywhere from the scrap heap to the Far East.

Bill Ladson of MLB.com writes the Nationals will scout former Cy Young Award-winner Brandon Webb and the Washington Post 's Adam Kilgore writes the team could pursue Japanese ace Yu Darvish.

Webb is scheduled to pitch in an instructional league game on Saturday in Tucson, as well as on Thursday at Chase Field in Phoenix. Webb hasn't pitched this season and is a free agent after it ends.

Ladson also writes Webb would be interested in pitching for the Nationals if he doesn't re-sign with the Diamondbacks. Nationals general manager Mike Rizzo was director of scouting with the Diamondbacks in 2000 when the team drafted Webb.

Darvish could be posted by his team, the Nippon Ham Fighters (Ham, by the way, goes with Nippon, not Fighters -- Nippon Ham is the sponsor of the Fighters). Darvish, 23, started his professional career at 19, when he posted a 2.89 ERA -- his highest by a run in his career. Darvish went 12-8 this season with a 1.78 ERA, 222 strikeouts and 1.01 WHIP.

Darvish could cost as much as $25 million just to win the posting -- that money goes to his team, while his contract negotiations are separate.

Kilgore writes the Nationals have seen Darvish in person at least nine times and have recommended to the front office that he is worth pursuing.

-- C. Trent Rosecrans

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The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com