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  1. #1
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    The Official "We Want Shohei Otani" Thread

    Teenager in Japan who's available to be signed by MLB clubs.

    Hell yes

    I first found out about Otani about a year ago, when Yakyu Kozoh had a story on potential successors to Yu Darvish. Otani caught my eye because he graded a perfect 5/5 “Darvishes” and, at 17, he was the youngest pitcher profiled. Every tall, young righty elicits some kind of comparison to Darvish from the Japanese media, so Otani is not unique in that regard. What is a little more unique is that in terms of physique and ability, the comparison stands up reasonably well. At 193 cm (6’4) and 86 kg (189 lbs), Otani measures similarly to Darvish, though a little shorter and perhaps a little heavier than Darvish was at 18. Otani also has a similarly live arm, though with a little more velocity and a lot less polish than Darvish exhibited as a high schooler.

    I’ve only seen one Otani pitch one full game, his appearance in this spring’s Koshien Senbatsu tournament against fellow draft phenom Shintaro Fujinami. It was a frustrating game to watch, as the raw quality of Otani’s stuff was evident, but his command was non-existent. He featured a fastball ranging from about 145-152 km/h (90-95 mph), a slider around 132-136 km/h (82-84 mph) and curve around 125 km/h (77 mph). Everything had movement, and his wildness was of the effective variety until the 6th inning, when he and his defense faltered, before melting down (video) in the 7th. For the day, Otani struck out 11, walked 11 and gave up nine runs (five earned) while taking the loss. That looks bad, but Otani was facing a quality lineup with aluminum bats on a big stage, and his manager left him out for 173 pitches. The raw talent is there, but it was clearly just that in that game – raw.
    http://www.npbtracker.com/2012/10/who-is-shohei-otani/
    Last edited by Ian.; 10-23-2012 at 10:30 PM.
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  2. #2
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    So Otani is a prospect, and an excellent one at that. If his command was better I might call him the best high school pitching prospect I’ve seen in the 12 years or so that I’ve been paying attention, but for now I think that distinction will remain with Hayato Terahara. My preferred print publications Shukan Baseball and Yakyu Kozoh have him at the top of this year’s draft class, and NPB Prospect Watch ranks him third, noting his command issues but also his excellent track record as a batter. Draft Reports has a long list of comments from scouts on him, too many to translate individually but unanimously in praise of his potential. A couple of notable comments were from the Dodgers’ Logan White, who said that he went to Japan just to see Otani, and the Rays’ Tim Ireland, who compared him to Felix Hernandez.
    Same link
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  3. #3
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    Otani was the potential No. 1 overall pick in this week's Japanese draft until he announced yesterday that he plans to play in the United States. The 18-year-old righthander is extremely athletic and projectable at 6-foot-4 and 190 pounds, and his fastball has been clocked in the upper 90s. He also throws a slider and a splitter, though his secondary pitches and command are still works in progress. After the Dodgers met with Otani in September, assistant GM Logan White told the Japanese press that Otani had the talent to be the top overall choice in the MLB draft.

    Under the new Collective Bargaining Agreement, teams get $2.9 million with which to sign international amateurs. But unlike the restrictions for exceeding draft bonus pools, which could cost a club its next two first-round choices, the penalties for surpassing international bonus pools aren't as harsh. A team that blows past its international pool by 15 percent or more would pay a 100-percent tax on the overage and be forbidden to pay an international amateur more than $250,000 during next year's signing period.

    For a player with Otani's upside, that's not much of a deterrent. Also consider that in the draft, a player of his caliber would be available only to the teams choosing at the very top. On the worldwide market, all 30 teams are in play. Clubs accustomed to picking at the bottom of the draft may be willing to pay dearly for the opportunity to sign him.

    Three teams—the Dodgers, Rangers and Red Sox—have met with Otani in Japan, and he said yesterday that he plans on signing with one of them. We don't have access to how much money clubs have remaining in their international bonus pools, but Texas appears to have the most among those three teams. (The Rangers' $4.5 million signing of Beras doesn't count against the pool because it happened in February.) Boston, which spent a combined $1.36 million on Dominican righthander Jose Almonte, Dominican shortstop Wendell Rijo and Venezuelan lefty Dedgar Jimenez, has the least money among the three clubs.

    But as I said, I don't think cap space is going to matter when it comes to signing Otani. For the same reason, I don't think he'll have to wait until next year's signing period to maximize his money. He'll need some time to develop, but Otani has a special arm and will get paid accordingly.
    http://www.baseballamerica.com/today...2/2614229.html
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  4. #4
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    i wish...

  5. #5
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    Ehh, seems a little wild. I'd like it if he isn't too expensive.
    You have no idea how excited I am right now.


  6. #6
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    He's eighteen dude. Jim Callis says he's a first overall guy if he were in this draft.

    The new CBA only allows $2.9m for an IFA signing bonus. Overages result in loss of draft picks.

    But I he's as talented as they say and he costs us a $5M bonus and a loss of a third rounder, I'd do it without hesitation.
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  7. #7
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    yeah it would be like adding an addition first round talent at the price of a lower pick. go for it

  8. #8
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    Yeah, it's really a no brainer.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by A.Mopp View Post
    yeah it would be like adding an addition first round talent at the price of a lower pick. go for it
    You pay $2.9 million for a lower pick?
    You have no idea how excited I am right now.


  10. #10
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    what you miss understood. if you can get a first round talent to sign with you and all its costs is a lower round pick go for it. its better value

  11. #11
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    take the $ you'd spend on him and put it toward hamilton!

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rain City View Post
    take the $ you'd spend on him and put it toward hamilton!
    Sign this kid and Hamilton LOL. Or just this kid. I doubt Hamilton will come here, even if we made the best offer.

  13. #13
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    I've been hearing 4/80 for Hamilton, which is surprising. He will definitely want more years, but may not get em.

    Get this kid and trade for Gordon would be fine with me.
    You have no idea how excited I am right now.


  14. #14
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    id go 4/80 for Hamilton

  15. #15
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    id go 5/100... we dont need another RH future ace anyways... haha.... we'd be fools not make a strong attempt at the youngster, but i prefer we put priority on hamilton.

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