The Yomiuri ShimbunHokkaido Nippon Ham Fighters two-way star Shohei Otani has decided to make the jump to Major League Baseball under the posting system once the season here is over, multiple sources said Wednesday.
Otani has turned in quality seasons as a pitcher and as a hitter. He has batted.346/.416/.574 through 51 games this season for the Nippon Ham Fighters and the right-handed-thrower also boasts a 2.60 ERA and 10.4 K/9 in 522 1/3 career innings. As a pitcher, Otani turned in dominant campaigns from 2014-16.
So instead of a bidding war, teams will have to make other kinds of pitches to Otani. "The 6'3" right-hander has a fastball that can touch 102 miles per hour, to go with nasty secondary pitches.
Reports: Japanese MVP Shohei Otani expects to be in MLB in 2018
Otani helped the Fighters win the Japan Series last year and will reportedly be available to help an Major League Baseball team lift a World Series trophy as soon as next year given Tuesday's news.
The versatile 23-year-old prodigy will attempt to sign with an Major League Baseball franchise despite a system in place that would make it rather unusual for a player in his position to do so. And then it will be interesting to see if that team allows him to be a position player as well.
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