Schoolboy with MLB designs upsets Japan baseball establishment


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Stick to your guns, young man!!

9 ( +8 / -0 )

Good luck to him. i hope he succeeds ☆。

6 ( +6 / -0 )

“It will definitely be a positive for him to join us,” he added, vowing to visit Otani’s home in Hanamaki “as many times as possible.”

Otani should put out the unwelcome sign. As I've said before, he can circumvent the posting fee. Even if the MLB doesn't work out, he might make as much money with a signing bonus than those three years lost in NPB salary.

1 ( +4 / -3 )

Go for it! One shud be free to work where they wish & employment is available.

In this case he can choose either Japan or the US so feel free to make your own choice & DEFINITELY ignore that momoi twil from the giants, that guy is a plague on the sport!

2 ( +3 / -1 )

The youngsters truculence

Japanese youngsters sign contracts requiring them to play for NPB before exercising other options? It sounds more like "greedy NPB owners who want a sweet slice of the fees after providing zero services"

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Good for him!!!

5 ( +5 / -0 )

“This could lead to the hollowing out of Japanese professional baseball,”

said the owner of the team responsible for buying-up (with their financial might) nearly every single ace player who gets to contract extension time in the Japan leagues, as well as money-influencing deals at school draft time. Hypocrisy at it's highest level.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

Good move kid. Go where the money is! Also if he does do well he will attract more recruiters to Japan. Win win!

3 ( +3 / -0 )

However, if his venture Stateside falls flat, under NPB rules Otani will have to wait up to three years before he is permitted to play for a Japanese pro club

What a joke.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Good on him! The NPB, like most other practices in Japan, is indeed very outdated and in need of a revamp. Maybe this will help a little, but I doubt it -- the kid will be vilified in the media, then ignored, and Japan will just shut its eyes and ears to the boy's talent.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

Schoolboy with MLB designs upsets Japan baseball establishment

Three strikes for this young lad! Doesn't follow established protectionist system, brings too much attention to the fact that the best baseball is not played in Japan, and punches hole in local money bag.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

“This could lead to the hollowing out of Japanese professional baseball,”

A few players out of hundreds is not a drain. There are still a lot of talented baseball players left in Japan.

the youngster needed time to develop his talents

...and this can only be done in Japan? What?!

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Kuriyama, who has described Otani as having the potential to “be another Darvish”, said the youngster needed time to develop his talents.

Meaning, of course, the youngster needs time to have his arm completely worn out so he'll be less valuable to the MLB seven or eight years from now.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Go forth and conquer young lad, but methinks a language and cultural battle royal wilst ensue with possibly no home fort to return to! Also perhaps it would be helpful to mention Nomo, a past knight of great fame in the performed very well stakes?

-1 ( +0 / -2 )

Good choice. Japanese baseball is basically salarymen in uniforms -- their entire goal is to play 20 or 25 years and not get injured...

0 ( +2 / -2 )

good boy! you'll have more success here for sure! ^-^

0 ( +0 / -0 )

It seems Nippon Ham don't understand the word "no". Why are they so determined to harass Otani when he clearly states he does not want to play for them? If this is how they treat prospective players I hate to think how they carry on once you have signed for them.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Good young man, Stick with your plans and don't buckle under pressure. Do what's best for you!

5 ( +4 / -0 )

Nippon Ham Fighters: "Can't you just please take one in the a$$ for 'The Wa' of Japanese society?"

New Kid: "Uhm no...."

NHF: "Please?????"

NK: "No..."

1 ( +3 / -2 )

I wish this kid well. Smart kid for his age. Seems like sour grapes for the teams here because they know they can't cash in on him with a trade to the US. Get your English sorted and don't look back!

1 ( +3 / -2 )

Get over it, JPB !

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Good luck to him.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

He should write Darvish a nice thank you letter. Good luck with your dreams kid.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

I've seen pictures of the kid. He'd look awfully good in a Twins uniform.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

As Robert Whiting said, "this was inevitable". Nippon Professional Baseball has been holding its players at Ransom demanding massive cash payoffs before they give up a player to MLB. You can now bet that NPB is scrambling to come up with some sort of rule that would in essence Handcuff young Japanese players to stay and play in Japan. If the kid does well in the USA the Japanese Media will soon forget his Betrayal and Embrace his success. They'll spew off daily verbage on how he is a product of a great Japanese youth system. If he does not do well then they'll soon forget him.... relegated to the shunned class.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

i think this young man is just right that he wants to follow HIS dream. i hope all the best. it also looks like he knows that he won`t be pitching in MLB right off the bat so to speak. he has his head screwed on right.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Good on young Otani for calling the bluff of NPB. It sounds as though he'll do fine in the States.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

“It will definitely be a positive for him to join us,” he added, vowing to visit Otani’s home in Hanamaki “as many times as possible.”

Sadly, he will not go to talk to Otani but to all of his teammates, friends, relatives, and local business and political leaders in an effort to put pressure on Otani to maintain the status quo. This is microcosm of Japanese life within the "system," a system that is falling apart, not because the kids are less respective of the traditions but because the system is failing to serve the youth and the nation as a whole.

It is interesting that the same English term, "hollowing out," is also used to describe the effects of off-shoring on the Japanese economy. This should serve as a warning to the vested interests in the Japanese status quo that their methods are no longer effective. However, it is probably asking too much for them to reform the system except to the extent they can hold on to their dwindling power and authority.

Otani should be a role model for every Japanese under the age of 30, not to leave Japan but to finds ways to live and prosper outside the current system. Otherwise their future will be very bleak, indeed.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Good Luck, save your money, and go to school.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

While I'm glad he's going to follow his dream, you can't reproach the NPB for wanting to keep the best players and make the best league possible, you would do the same. He wouldn't "wear out" his arm, he would professionally pitch ina meaningful league. Would you excuse a soccer player if he were taking it easy waiting for a transfer in the Premier League ? I don't think so.

That said, good luck to him, that will be exciting to watch.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

“He will be going to a place where the manager and coaches will treat him as an adult and not a boot camp inductee as is the case with NPB.”

Amen. As Whiting says, the NPB model is totally antiquated, like much of Japan Inc's business models, but it can't change because it knows no other way to do business. Three cheers to a young man who recognizes that MLB has the "formidable players ... from other countries" as he phrases it, and NPD's xenophobic structure will never compete. To be the best you must compete against the best, and NPB is no where near that level.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

if more and more young people do this sort of thing - thumb their noses at "what is expected" in the aniquated system that is japan, inc. and persue their dreams - maybe, just maybe, things will start to change. we can only hope.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Good luck to him! If this is what he wants to do then why shouldnt he??

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Good on him "do want you want do, Be want you want be"Yeh!!!

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Good on him! Great to see a Japanese kid showing some confidence, backing his ability and refusing to bow to silly traditions. If he played 7 years in Japan Professional Leagues, he runs the risk of burning out before he hits the big time in the US. NPB has been running a restraint of trade racket for far too long.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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