Oakland A’s fend of MLB competition to ‘agree a one-year deal’ with Japanese three-time All-Star Shintaro Fujinami as they ‘plan to add the right-hander to their starting rotation’
Right-hander Shintaro Fujinami will make his Major League Baseball debut with the Oakland Athletics in 2023, ESPN reported Wednesday, following an up-and-down playing career in Japan for the Hanshin Tigers.
Fujinami, 28, signed a one-year deal with the A’s, according to the report, after the three-time All-Star in his native country went through the posting process required of players moving from clubs in Japan to MLB.
The deal is reportedly pending a physical and has yet to be confirmed by the MLB club.
Shintaro Fujinami will make his Major League Baseball debut with the Oakland A’s in 2023
The 6-foot-6 hard-thrower, with a fastball that has reached 100 mph and sits in the upper 90s, is known for his slider-fastball mix that the A’s desired after they went an American League-worst 60-102 in 2022. He has bounced between the Tigers and the club’s farm system throughout his career.
Several teams were linked to the hard-throwing righty after his official posting by the Tigers but the A’s reportedly plan to have him join their starting rotations, which may have influenced his decision.
Oakland had a combined 4.69 ERA from their starting pitchers last season, fifth-worst in baseball and second-worst in the AL.
The right-hander has reportedly agreed a one-year deal, which has yet to be confirmed
The 6-foot-6 hard-thrower has a fastball that has reached 100 mph and sits in the upper 90s
The club was middle of the pack with 850 1/3 innings from their starters. Fujinami is reportedly being targeted for the A’s rotation.
Fujinami, who was selected in the same 2012 draft class as Shohei Ohtani, is 57-54 with a 3.41 ERA and 1,011 strikeouts with Hanshin over 189 appearances (87 starts).
After recent inconsistencies, he delivered a 3.38 ERA in 16 appearances (10 starts) for the Tigers’ top club in 2022.