Web Analytics and Web Statistics by NextSTAT The Boston Sports Nut: Sox may be after Junichi Tazawa,

Friday, October 31, 2008

Sox may be after Junichi Tazawa,

Japanese starter Junichi Tazawa, whom the Red Sox have scouted extensively, was passed over in yesterday’s draft of amateur players in Japan, and is now available to Major League Baseball teams.

Tazawa is bidding to become just the third Japanese-born player to play in the majors without playing pro ball in his native country. He asked Japanese teams to bypass him in order to more easily sign with an MLB team.

The Sox and Chicago Cubs were among the most interested teams scouting Tazawa when he pitched Nippon Oil to the corporate championship. His fastball is said to touch 97 mph, though some scouts believe that to be an exaggeration.

One baseball executive noted while Tazawa is now free to sign with any MLB team, there were “unspecified issues” at play that will prevent him from signing anytime soon.

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