I am so sick of Cubs fans foaming at the mouth over their Fudokme signing. No one knows how he will fare in the MLB. He hit well in Japan, against their stellar pitchers like Kei Igawa, who cant even stay in the MLB. He hit well against 2nd and 3rd tier pitching. If American platers like Tony Bautista can dominate in Japan way past his prime, what does that say about Japan's baseball? It says that its overrated. When 4th and 5th tier baseball players like Gabe Kapler can succeed in Japan, yet battle for a 40 man roster spot, it only exemplifies how overrated Japan's baseball league is compared to the MLB. A year ago Boston paid over $150 mil for a pitcher who now has a 4.5 ERA. He was supposed to be unhittable. America had never seen any pitcher like him. Turns out he was unhittable, in Japan. Turns out America had seen pitching like him, which is why he served up 25 homeruns. America had seen pitchers like him, as can be seen in his .500 record when he plays for the best offense in the league. The competition in America is unquestionably better, so teams, scouts, and managers should accomadate this in their contracts. Yes, their are players that succeed like Ichiro. But what about all the other Japanese touted all-stars who were supposed to save teams, franchices, and cities. People and fans forget about the hype that Kaz Matsui brought, Kenji Johjima, Hideo Nomo, Hideki Irabu all brought. Non of them became dominant. Not one is even in the top 5 or 10 in their posistion. Call me crazy, but Hideki Matsui is even overrated. He was touted as the Japanese Barry Bonds when he made his transfer, in 2003. Yet, in 5 years he has hit over 30 HR just once. He has hit over .300 once. Not to mention his fielding isnt exactly eye-popping.
Fudokme could be a great player. But by looking at the transactions from Japan to the MLB, players struggle. A lot. He isnt the Cubs savior. He isnt going to be the reason they make the playoffs. He's an upgrade, but he is no god.