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The Next Japanese Ace?

June 20, 2007 | By RotoRob | comment on this post

Looking for the next big thing to come out of the land of the rising sun? Thanks to Tim McLeod for turning us on to Yuki Saito, a Japanese college pitcher who, while considered a long-term project, is someone whose name will be popping up very frequently over the next several years.

On Sunday, Saito gave up just one run over 5 2/3 innings to lead Waseda University to its first national collegiate championship in over 30 years. He scattered seven hits and fanned six while starting for the second time in as many days.

For his efforts, Saito was named tournament MVP, becoming the first freshman to ever take home the honours. Saito first gained prominence last year when he propelled Waseda Jitsugyo to a national high school championship.

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4 Responses to “The Next Japanese Ace?”

  1. AS usual there will probably only be four or five teams capable of bidding on another Japanese phenom. The MLB powers to be need to revise this system.

  2. RotoRob says:

    Agreed. I really thought Boras was going to try to break the system last year with Dice K.

  3. tlmcleod says:

    As well as MLB there is also the NPB involved in this equation, further complicating matters. My gut feeling is that Boras would love to challenge the current posting procedure, but Dice K was not the guy to challenge with as his desire to play in MLB greater than the desire to tie up his career in a potentially long legal battle.

  4. RotoRob says:

    Well, who would be the best test case? It’s got to be someone who major league teams REALLY want to get their paws on.

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