Well, its still not clear who won the bid for Japanese League superstar pitcher Yu Darvish yet. The general "consensus" in the media is that its the Toronto Blue Jays. If it is indeed the Blue Jays who won the bid, this almost immediately signals they will be in contention in 2012. I'm not certain they are 'all in' for next season but the team is certainly set up to compete for the next few years. The Jays will be stocked with quality young talent all who have not seen their 27th birthday.
I have read quite a bit on Japanese imports and how they are a mixed bag for results. For every highly successful Ichiro Suzuki and Hideki Matsui there is a Hideki Irabu and Daizake Matsuzaka. Unfortunately for Yu Darvish, he will be judged similarly. However, I hate to generalize. Each player should be analyzed individually. I've seen some video of Darvish (click here). His frame (6'5), smooth delivery and filthy movement on his pitches could translate to long term success in the majors. Toronto is a great city for him to play in with a strong multi-cultural fan base. It all seems like a good fit but I'm certain that's what Boston fans where thinking when the Red Sox brass signed Dice-K.
The last thing to note about Darvish, is that Japanese pitchers, unlike their position player counterparts, have generally been more successful on this side of the Pacific. The general consensus appears to be that at best Darvish is an elite #2 starter and at worst an effective #3.
That all being stated, there is still no gurantee he lands in Toronto. We know the Rangers, Cubs and Yankees were all in the mix and that the rumours are stating that the Jays won the bid with a $48 million post. We'll unfortunately be waiting until Tuesday to find out.
If you can't get enough on Yu, head over to Drunk Jays Fans for more HERE!
IN OTHER NEWS (yes, the baseball world continues on despite most of it waiting on Darvish)
A fantasy friendly signing for the Rockies as they bring the under valued bat of Michael Cuddyer to town. He got 3 years and $31.5 million, pretty good cake for a hitter who's only crushed more than 25 home runs once in his career. I'm not a fan of this deal for the Colorado organization but for fantasy purposes Cuddyer, suddenly is a bit more interesting. He's a guy who should hit .275-20-70 but the Coors effect should push him up into the .280-25-85 projection range.
Alright, that's all for now...