Japanese infielder Hiroyuki Nakajima draws a bid from at least one MLB team

1 Comment

UPDATE: We can scratch at least one team off the list. According to Tom Haudricourt of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, Brewers general manager Doug Melvin said yesterday that he was not submitting a bid on Nakajima.

10:30 PM: Patrick Newman of NPB Tracker passes along a Japanese media report that at least one MLB team has submitted a bid on infielder Hiroyuki Nakajima.

The window for teams to submit bids on Nakajima expired yesterday. According to Newman, the Seibu Lions are expected to accept the highest bid regardless of the amount. In turn, the team with the winning bid will be given an exclusive 30-day negotiating period to reach agreement on a contract.

Nakajima, 29, batted .297/.354/.433 with 16 home runs, 100 RBI and 21 stolen bases in 2011 in what was a down year for offense in NPB. He is a .302 career hitter in Japan and has surpassed at least 16 home runs and 15 stolen bases in each of the last four seasons.

It’s not known who may have submitted a bid, but a Sanspo report earlier this week indicated that the Brewers intended to so. And that makes some sense, since they have a void at shortstop right now. However, some believe Nakajima may be better suited to play second base in MLB.

2017 Preview: The American League Central

Getty Images
Leave a comment

For the past few weeks we’ve been previewing the 2017 season. Here, in handy one-stop-shopping form, is our package of previews from the American League Central

Do the Indians have a weakness? Do the Tigers and Royals have one more playoff push in them or do they have to start contemplating rebuilds? The White Sox and Twins are rebuilding, but do either of them have a chance to be remotely competitive?

As we sit here in March, the answers are “not really,” “possibly,” and “not a chance.” There are no games that count this March, however, so they’re just guesses. But educated ones! Here are the links to our guesses and our education for all of the clubs of the AL Central:

Cleveland Indians
Detroit Tigers
Kansas City Royals
Chicago White Sox
Minnesota Twins

2017 Preview: The National League East

Getty Images
2 Comments

For the past few weeks we’ve been previewing the 2017 season. Here, in handy one-stop-shopping form, is our package of previews from the National League East

The Washington Nationals crave a playoff run that doesn’t end at the division series. The Mets crave a season in which they don’t have a press conference about an injured pitcher. The Marlins are trying to put the nightmare of the end of the 2016 behind them. The Phillies and Braves are hoping to move on from the “lose tons of games” phase of their rebuilds and move on to the “hey, these kids can play!” phase.

There is a ton of star power in the NL East — Harper, Scherzer, Cespedes, Syndergaard, Stanton, Freeman — some great young talent on ever roster and, in Ichiro and Bartolo, the two oldest players in the game. Maybe the division can’t lay claim to the best team in baseball, but there will certainly be some interesting baseball in the division.

Here’s how each team breaks down:

Washington Nationals
New York Mets
Miami Marlins
Philadelphia Phillies
Atlanta Braves