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November 07, 2006

Kei Igawa

Newsday is running a great feature today entitled "Mysterious gyroball may or may not be an actual Matsuzaka pitch" and I saw this in the notes there (at the end):

The Hanshin Tigers' Kei Igawa, a highly touted lefthander who is likely to be posted in the coming weeks, starts tonight for Japan.

I just looked at the stats for Kei Igawa. Why is this player not getting as much hype as Daisuke Matsuzaka? I don't get it.

Posted by Steve Lombardi at November 7, 2006 09:56 AM

Comments

At mlbtraderumors, there's a link to a poll of Japanese baseball fans about whether Igawa will succeed in the mlb. Apparently, 71% say no. Not sure how significant that is, but perhaps his numbers are better than he actually looks when he's out there on the mound.

Posted by: Nick from Washington Heights [TypeKey Profile Page] at November 7, 2006 11:08 AM

Is he not pitching against the same talent as D-Mat?

Posted by: Steve Lombardi [TypeKey Profile Page] at November 7, 2006 11:28 AM

I just looked at the stats for Kei Igawa. Why is this player not getting as much hype as Daisuke Matsuzaka? I don't get it.
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I'd be willing to wager that it's the "name" factor. But it could be any number of things.

Posted by: Raf [TypeKey Profile Page] at November 7, 2006 12:16 PM

Name-factor?

Posted by: Steve Lombardi [TypeKey Profile Page] at November 7, 2006 12:40 PM

Maybe bc his stats are NOT as good as DM: era 05, 2.30; 06, 2.13. Igawa: era 05, 3.86, 06, 3.11.

and this is speculation, but DM probably throws harder too.

Posted by: 98Yanks [TypeKey Profile Page] at November 7, 2006 01:29 PM

Sometimes slower is better.

Posted by: Steve Lombardi [TypeKey Profile Page] at November 7, 2006 01:54 PM

Name-factor?
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Sure. Like when the Yanks signed Jaret Wright, when they had Esteban Loaiza, a similar pitcher on the market.

We see it all the time with the "untested rookie" vs the "proven veteran"

Posted by: Raf [TypeKey Profile Page] at November 7, 2006 03:03 PM

Kei Igawa will be a good MLB pitcher. He's not Matsuzaka. He's near the bottom of the Top 5 or 6 Japanese pitchers list, in my opinion.

He's older. His stuff is not electric. He has shown some inconsistency in the past. He can get flustered on the mound. His higher ERAs come in a league where the pitcher hits. There are a lot of reasons that Igawa isn't spoken of in the same breath as Matsuzaka. Mainly, he's not nearly as good.

That said, he will be a decent pro in the US, given the opportunity. Next year will see Koji Uehara join the Majors, and you'll see someone worth spending on....

Posted by: Mike Plugh [TypeKey Profile Page] at November 7, 2006 05:16 PM

Kei Igawa will be a good MLB pitcher. He's not Matsuzaka. He's near the bottom of the Top 5 or 6 Japanese pitchers list, in my opinion.

He's older. His stuff is not electric. He has shown some inconsistency in the past. He can get flustered on the mound. His higher ERAs come in a league where the pitcher hits. There are a lot of reasons that Igawa isn't spoken of in the same breath as Matsuzaka. Mainly, he's not nearly as good.

That said, he will be a decent pro in the US, given the opportunity. Next year will see Koji Uehara join the Majors, and you'll see someone worth spending on....

Posted by: Mike Plugh [TypeKey Profile Page] at November 7, 2006 05:16 PM

Steve, you must realize that NPB ERAs are generally lower on average, a mid to high 3s ERA is generally "average to above average" kind of like what a low 4 ERA in the AL is.

Posted by: Yu Hsing Chen [TypeKey Profile Page] at November 7, 2006 10:56 PM

Igawa is a Hero in Osaka because he always shines under presure. The hype thing as Steve Lombardi was asking is easy to explain. He plays for HANSHIN. The biggest rival of KYOJIN (Tokyo team where H.Matsui played). A really funny thing is that Matsui's father was and maybe he still is a DEVOTED HANSHIN TIGERS fan... until his son was drsfted by KYOJIN or GIANTS in English.

Posted by: Angelo [TypeKey Profile Page] at December 8, 2006 10:10 PM