Hanshin Tigers right-handed pitcher Kosuke Baba (28) will be changing into the uniform of the rival Yomiuri Giants. Yomiuri selected Baba in the Nippon Professional Baseball (NPB) “Active Draft” on Aug. 8 and confirmed the signing. It will be the first time in 19 years that a Hanshin player has moved to Yomiuri since 2004.
The NPB introduced the active draft last year to encourage the transfer of players with fewer playing opportunities. It mainly targets players making less than 50 million yen a year. In this, the second year of the program, 12 players have changed teams to start fresh.
Nine of the 12 players are pitchers. Three were first-round draft picks. They were an average of 25.9 years old, 5.9 years in the league, 먹튀검증 and earned an average salary of 17.02 million yen. Six of the 12 players released last year were released within a year.
Baba joined the organization as the No. 1 pick in the 2018 Rookie Draft out of Sendai University. He appeared in a total of four games in 2018 and 2019 before settling in. In 2020, he went 2-1 with a 2.08 ERA in 32 games and a 3.80 ERA in 44 games in 2021. In 2022, he started just seven games.
This year, he seemed to bounce back.
In 19 games, he’s 2-1 with a 2.45 ERA. It’s his first start in five years after making two in his rookie season in 2018. He gave up two runs on four hits in three innings against the Hiroshima Carp on Oct. 1 on bullpen day.
He was also good in the second team (Western League). In 28 games, he went 3-1 with a 1.97 ERA.
Baba said, “I think the move to Yomiuri is an opportunity for me. I’m looking forward to contributing to my new team and I’m grateful to Hanshin for drafting me as the No. 1 pick and nurturing me for six years.”
This season, Hanshin topped the Central League and advanced directly to the final stage of the Climax Series. They swept Hiroshima to advance to the Japan Series. They won their first Japan Series in 38 years by defeating the Pacific League’s top-ranked Oryx Buffaloes, but Baba was unable to play.
His salary this year is 29.5 million yen (about $270 million).
Hungry for action, Baba had set a goal of “60 games” for next season.
A move to Yomiuri, which is in need of mound reinforcements, could be an opportunity for Baba. With the pitching talent in Hanshin, it’s hard to break through the competition.
Hanshin and Yomiuri have been at odds this season. While Hanshin lifted the Japan Series trophy for the first time in 38 years, Yomiuri remained in Class B (4th-6th out of 6 teams) for the second straight year. Manager Tatsunori Hara resigned early after the season with one year left on his contract.
Hanshin finished first out of 12 teams in both leagues this season with a team ERA of 2.66. Yomiuri posted a 3.39, good for fifth out of six teams in the Central League. 토토사이트 The team led both leagues in batting average and home runs, but a lack of focus from the bats and a weak mound prevented them from rising to the top.
Baba said he’d like to see a full-court press against Hanshin.