Report: Red Sox near deal for Japanese pitcher Itsuki Shoda
|02.11.11 at 10:50 pm ET|
According to Nikkansports.com, the Red Sox signed right-hander Itsuki Shoda — the 2002 Pacific League Rookie of the Year in Japan — to a minor league contract. GM Theo Epstein said in the article that the deal for Shoda is near completion, and that he is expected to report on time to the team’s minor league camp.
Shoda is a 29-year-old left-hander who reportedly is a curveball specialist. He went 9-11 with a 3.45 ERA as a rookie for the Nippon Ham Fighters, but his numbers dropped significantly from there. He was sent to the minors in 2006, then traded to Hanshin, for whom he spent the next two years in the minors before heading to Taiwan.
There, Shoda was effective, leading the league in wins (14) and strikeouts (115) with a 4.44 ERA. In 2010, he was again effective in Taiwan, going 11-5 with a 2.81 ERA and 116 strikeouts.
Here is video of one of his 2010 games for the Sinon Bulls:
Latest from Bleacher Report
- Players of the Week, 8/11-17: Keith Couch & Keury De La Cruz
- Cup of Coffee: Top picks Chavis and Kopech key GCL Sox win
- Jackie Bradley, Jr. optioned to Pawtucket, Betts called up to Boston
- Weekly Notes: Margot's break out continues in Salem
- Cup of Coffee: Monge, Margot, and Mookie keep mashing
- Cup of Coffee: Couch dominates Richmond
- Cup of Coffee: Rodriguez dominates while Kukuk and Ball struggle
- Manuel Margot promoted to High A Salem
- Cup of Coffee: Gem by Matt Barnes leads PawSox
- Cup of Coffee: Asuaje leads the way as Salem takes two