Yu Darvish could be headed to MLB this offseason

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Prepare thyself.  Another “must-see” Japanese pitching prospect could be on his way to the states as soon as this offseason.

FOXSports.com’s Ken Rosenthal heard from a source Saturday that right-hander Yu Darvish is likely to be “posted” this winter, meaning teams in Major League Baseball will have a crack at luring him away from the Nippon Ham Fighters.

Darvish is only 24 and widely considered one of the top pitchers in Japan.  He has won two MVP awards in his first five seasons of professional baseball and became the youngest player in Japanese baseball history to be given a contract worth more than 300 million yen (about $3.5 million US) when he re-signed with Nippon last season.

He will have no trouble topping that salary if and when he signs with a team state-side.  The Yankees, according to Rosenthal, have been watching every one of his starts and other teams are sure to step forward with bids as well.  But let’s also keep in mind that pitchers of Darvish’s ilk are not guaranteed success in the big leagues.  In fact, few have found it an easy transition.

Report: Athletics to acquire Stephen Piscotty from the Cardinals

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Jon Heyman of FanRag Sports reports that the Athletics and Cardinals have agreed on a trade involving outfielder Stephen Piscotty. The Cardinals will receive two as yet unknown minor leaguers in return.

Piscotty, 26, hit .235/.342/.367 with nine home runs and 39 RBI in 401 plate appearances for the Cardinals this past season. He dealt with injuries and with his mother’s ALS diagnosis, so it was a rough year, but very excusably so. The Cardinals had signed him to a six-year, $33.5 million contract extension in March. He’s under contract through 2022 at a total of $29.5 million and has a club option for 2023 worth $15 million with a $1 million buyout.

The Cardinals had an outfield spot open up after agreeing to acquire Marcell Ozuna from the Marlins on Wednesday so the Piscotty trade doesn’t come as a surprise.