This Just In: Bobby Valentine predicted Tsuyoshi Nishioka’s broken leg (sort of)
|03.04.12 at 2:15 pm ET|
FORT MYERS, Fla. — Bobby Valentine tried to warn Tsuyoshi Nishioka.
Prior to facing his former infielder with the Chiba Lotte Marines, who now plays second base for the Minnesota Twins, Valentine told the story of how he visited with Nishioka during the 2011 spring training. During the get-together the Red Sox manager talked to the infielder about the dangers he would be facing playing the position in the United States.
Valentine told Nishioka that the problem he would be facing when turning double plays came in the method of sliding used in the major leagues. It was a reality the then-rookie became fully aware a month later when Nick Swisher of the Yankees broke Nishioka’s left fibula while breaking up a double play.
“I came to Fort Myers last year to have dinner last year to tell him they were going to try and break his leg and show him how to try and get out of the way, because he didn’t do that in Japan when he played second base for me his first year,” Valentin said.
“I actually got up and showed him where he had to be on that double play because in Japan you don’t have to worry about the inside side slide, only the outside slide. A guy comes inside and rolls he had to be out of the roll and he gave me the old – as he did as a player for me – ‘yeah, yeah, yeah, I understand. I understand. I understand.’ And he broke his leg.”
Valentine talked about the progress Nishioka made while with the Marines, prior to signing a three-year, $9 million deal with the Twins.
In case you forgot, the Red Sox bid on Nishioka, with their mid-$2 million posting fee offer falling short of Minnesota’s commitment.
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