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Yoshinobu Yamamoto: Japanese ace officially posted, teams have 45 days to sign the right-handed pitcher
Yoshinobu Yamamoto has officially been posted by the Orix Buffaloes. Teams will now have a 45-day negotiating window to come to terms with one of the most talented right-handed pitchers from Japan.
Teams can officially sign the righty on Tuesday morning at 8 A.M.
Yamamoto will be coveted by numerous teams. The Dodgers, Mets, Yankees, and Red Sox have been linked to the 25-year-old sensation.
He made his NPB league debut in 2017 and has won two MVPs and is a three-time Eiji Sawamura award winner. The Eiji Sawamura is the equivalent of the Cy Young award recognizing the top pitcher in each season.
Not only are his accolades impressive, but so are the numbers. In his NPB career he has pitched to a 1.82 ERA with a record of 70-29. His K rate is 9.2 and he has only given up 36 homeruns in 897 innings. Last season, he put up a 1.21 ERA in 164 innings while striking out 169.
The 5-foot-10, righty relies on a mid-to-upper 90s fastball, a devastating splitter, while mixing in a curve. He does throw a sweeper and cutter, but those pitches are not his best. His splitter held opponents to a .178 OBP.
Another asset of Yamamoto is his durability despite his small frame. He has thrown at least 160 innings over the past three seasons, including over 190 in 2021 and 2022. In his final start with the Buffaloes he pitched in a must win game 6 of the Japan Series. He threw 138 pitches while striking out 14 in a complete game performance.
Yamamoto is projected to get anywhere from seven or eight years with an average annual value of $25-30 million. Based on his career numbers, his young age and his durability, he has the resume to be considered an ace of a pitching staff next season.
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