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Shohei Otani - SP/OF Japan

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So I was following the ESPN MLB franchise draft and saw that Shohei Otani went 23 overall. I honestly don't know anything about him, what is his story? When will he come to the US?

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http://espn.go.com/mlb/story/_/id/12912627/two-way-player-shohei-otani-throws-strikes-smashes-home-runs-japan-next-big-export

So is Shohei Otani. If you haven't heard about the 20-year-old Japanese sensation, you will soon. He plays for the Nippon-Ham Fighters of Nippon Professional Baseball, the highest level of baseball in Japan, but he has designs on playing major league baseball. His current team could "post" him in three or four years and allow him to sign with an MLB franchise.

This article is from December of 2012:

http://articles.latimes.com/2012/dec/09/sports/la-sp-dn-shohei-otani-professional-career-japan-20121209

Teenage pitching prospect Shohei Otani announced his intention to start his professional career in his native Japan and sign with the Nippon-Ham Fighters.

Otani, 18, had previously said he would to come to the United States and the Dodgers were confident they would sign him.

The right-hander said he still wants to pitch in the major leagues one day.

“I would eventually like to go to the major leagues,” Otani said Sunday. “It’s a place I admire. I would like the Fighters to teach me the road to get there.”

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Japanese players must spend 7 years on their team before they may be posted. This is both Otani's and Fujinami's second year in the Nippon league which means they may not be posted until after the 2020 season. Otani is an absolute monster, a better prospect than even Darvish was.

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Japanese players must spend 7 years on their team before they may be posted. This is both Otani's and Fujinami's second year in the Nippon league which means they may not be posted until after the 2020 season. Otani is an absolute monster, a better prospect than even Darvish was.

The Dodgers knew this as well as they tried to sign him as an 18 year old back in 2012. Tried to lure him away from signing with a Japanese club and move to America early as a teen.

Otani has so much upside. I can only imagine the contract he'll demand when he gets posted in several years.

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Japanese players must spend 7 years on their team before they may be posted. This is both Otani's and Fujinami's second year in the Nippon league which means they may not be posted until after the 2020 season. Otani is an absolute monster, a better prospect than even Darvish was.

I'm fairly certain its seven years to free agency, not until posting. I believe their team could post them whenever, however its very unlikely that happens. Its also their third year in the NPB, not their second. Due to that, I've always read that 2018 or 2019 were the most likely years that we would see them playing over here.
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Japanese players must spend 7 years on their team before they may be posted. This is both Otani's and Fujinami's second year in the Nippon league which means they may not be posted until after the 2020 season. Otani is an absolute monster, a better prospect than even Darvish was.

I'm fairly certain its seven years to free agency, not until posting. I believe their team could post them whenever, however its very unlikely that happens. Its also their third year in the NPB, not their second. Due to that, I've always read that 2018 or 2019 were the most likely years that we would see them playing over here.

You may be right about free agency, I'm trying to verify, but it's exceedingly difficult to find nippon league contract rules. I was under the impression that they must spend 7 years in the league before they can ask to be posted.

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Japanese players must spend 7 years on their team before they may be posted. This is both Otani's and Fujinami's second year in the Nippon league which means they may not be posted until after the 2020 season. Otani is an absolute monster, a better prospect than even Darvish was.

I'm fairly certain its seven years to free agency, not until posting. I believe their team could post them whenever, however its very unlikely that happens. Its also their third year in the NPB, not their second. Due to that, I've always read that 2018 or 2019 were the most likely years that we would see them playing over here.

You may be right about free agency, I'm trying to verify, but it's exceedingly difficult to find nippon league contract rules. I was under the impression that they must spend 7 years in the league before they can ask to be posted.

Probably not much motivation to Post until they are close to being FA. Maximum profit. Get the most of the Kids best years on the team then sell them off (I.E. allow them to post)

Espically now that they have Max Posting limits. Even less profit to post before close to FA.

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The japanese Steve Nebraska

I'm excited. Fluid mechanics, can top 100 mph. Dirty dirty slider. And he's no slouch with the stick? What's not to like.

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Daniel Brim @DanielBrim Jul 4

Shohei Otani turns 21 today. This year in NPB: 79-2/3 IP, 1.47 ERA, 11.2 K/9, 2.5 BB/9, 4.6 hits/9, one home run allowed.

I think Otani had another start since this tweet, so I'll have to dig up how he did in that one.

Also, more video on Otani for those interested:

http://tv.pacificleague.jp/vod/pc/topics/Best_Scene/8574

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You guys do realize how many pitches he has thrown at such a young age? I worry about his arm lasting.

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You guys do realize how many pitches he has thrown at such a young age? I worry about his arm lasting.

Damned if ya do, damned if ha don't. Pitchers are a funny breed.

He's still a 100m+ guy if he came over right now.

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He's a better prospect than Darvish. He likely get a near 200M contract if he came over today.

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Jeff Passan @JeffPassan 2h2 hours ago

Longtime scout on 21-year-old Japanese RHP Shohei Otani: "He has a chance to be the best in the world. He's like Darvish who throws 100."

Jeff Passan @JeffPassan 2h2 hours ago

Lots of buzz about the Nippon Ham Fighters posting Shohei Otani after the 2016 season, though it's far too early to know their intentions.

Jeff Passan @JeffPassan 2h2 hours ago

As a 20-year-old last season, Otani went 15-5 with a 2.24 ERA. In 160 2/3 IP, he struck out 196, walked 46, allowed 100 hits and seven HRs.

Jeff Passan @JeffPassan 2h2 hours ago

One reason for optimism on Nippon Ham posting Shohei Otani in 2016: Some in Japan expect system to change, bump team's payment up from $20M.

Hypothetically speaking, let's say he gets posted after the 2016 season. Again, hypothetically speaking as I have no idea if it will actually happen or not, but let's just say. How much money do you think teams would throw at Otani? Tanaka got 7/155 in 2013. Darvish got 6/60 in 2012. Tanaka was 25 when he signed. Darvish was 26. So if Otani gets posted after the 2016 off season, he'll be 22. How much would he get under these circumstances?

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Given his age, stuff, and the ridiculous amounts of money being shelled out to pitchers now, I wouldn't be surprised if he got 180 million... with the posting fee of course.

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If you're in a keeper/dynasty league that allows you to add a guy like this right now you must do it.

I say 7/180 as well. After Strasburg he'll be the #2 best SP in the free agency class. It's a weak group next year.

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If you think about it, he has the potential of earning the most money ever by a MLB pitcher without having to pitch a single inning in the majors yet. If he's as good as he's suppose to be, you're looking at two massive contracts, potentially 3, if he structures the deal correctly.

He's a top 3 dynasty option for me. It doesn't get any better than a 21 year old Yu Darvish that throws 100 mph. His contract will rattle a lot of cages for the next CBA.

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Eric Longenhagen @longenhagen 5h5 hours ago

I'm in Peoria, AZ. Shohei Otani getting a start today for the Fighters.

Eric Longenhagen @longenhagen 4h4 hours ago

Ohtani's first inning: An easy 91-99, sink on the two seamers in the low end of that range, two splits.

Eric Longenhagen @longenhagen 4h4 hours ago

Otani strikes out the side in the 2nd. 94-98, showed four pitches including an above average 78mph curveball. Split flashed average.

Barry M. Bloom @Boomskie 5h5 hours ago Arizona, USA

Scouts section packed today in Peoria to see Shohei Otani pitch for Nippon.

Kazuto Yamazaki @Kazuto_Yamazaki Feb 5

Some video from today's outing: https://twitter.com/blackwings2011/status/697535822870876161

Two more video links from recently: https://twitter.com/PalillitoArnold/status/697488140693594112

https://twitter.com/blackwings2011/status/694906608896200704

Also, some more info on Otani's offseason:

The 21-year-old is coming off a dominant season during which he posted career bests in just about every statistical category that matters.

The hard-throwing righty worked 160.2 innings, had a Pacific League-best ERA of 2.24, fanned 196 and had a WHIP of 0.91.

His 15 wins tied him with Hideaki Wakui of the Chiba Lotte Marines for most in the league.

The 6-foot-4 Otani this offseason has been working to add weight -- he was listed at about 200 pounds last year. The Iwate Prefecture native also told the media he has spent part of the offseason eating as many as seven times a day and bulked up to around 220 pounds this winter.

"To perform at a high level, you have to improve at the low end [of your game]," Otani said early this year during a workout in front of media members. "That's true with strength as well, and if you don't have the physical ability, there are things you won't be able to do."

Otani met with Texas Rangers ace Yu Darvish in the offseason to get advice about his career.

Combine that meeting with added weight and it's hard not assume Otani has his eyes on the big prize -- an upcoming jump to the big leagues.

But the Fighters still own his rights for another five-and-a-half years, and it's doubtful they would post him this early in his career -- unless that was part of the deal reached when Nippon Ham talked him into signing when it took him with its first pick in the draft three-plus years ago.

Otani could be ready to put together a monster season and kick-start the process, but that's a big ask for a team that currently lacks superstar power.

Edited by NYR Fan 116894
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Have some fun with me now.

What happens if the hit tool continues to improve and he's a legit Ace Pitcher / Outfielder or DH. How do the fantasy platforms handle his entry into the game?

Hypothetically, if he were to have a 2 start week and play the field and bat 5 additional games. How would the fantasy platforms allow for his stats to count right now? Because as of right now, he would break the system. Probably my favorite prospect right now as I just want to see fantasy chaos.

Modern day Japanese Babe Ruth.

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Have some fun with me now.

What happens if the hit tool continues to improve and he's a legit Ace Pitcher / Outfielder or DH. How do the fantasy platforms handle his entry into the game?

Hypothetically, if he were to have a 2 start week and play the field and bat 5 additional games. How would the fantasy platforms allow for his stats to count right now? Because as of right now, he would break the system. Probably my favorite prospect right now as I just want to see fantasy chaos.

Modern day Japanese Babe Ruth.

I can't imagine many teams willing to let him pitch and play the field or even DH. They'd almost assuredly make him learn and perfect one position. With the footage and scouting reports, I can't see that position not being as a starter.

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Forgive my ignorance but is he a July 2nd guy or a free agent like Park or Maeda? I'm in a salary cap league with a July 2nd draft and a standard free agent signing period and need to plan accordingly.

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