From Danny Knobler of CBSSports.com comes word that the Royals have traded outfielder Greg Golson to the White Sox for cash considerations.
Golson was drafted 21st overall by the Phillies in the 2004 MLB Amateur Draft. He never developed into much of a hitter and has made only 42 career major-league plate appearances, but the 26-year-old still possesses good speed and elite defensive ability, and will act as quality organizational outfield depth for the Pale Hose during the 2012 season.
Golson batted .263/.330/.385 with eight home runs, 33 RBI and 15 stolen bases in 105 games last year for the Yankees’ Triple-A affiliate in Scranton/Wilkes-Barre. He is a .263/.311/.396 career hitter in the minors.
Yankees’ special advisor and former outfielder Hideki Matsui expects to help the club “convince or recruit” Japanese two-way star Shohei Otani, according to a report from MLB.com’s Deesha Thosar. The Yankees are currently viewed as the favorites to sign Otani, though there still figures to be plenty of competition for his services when he finally becomes eligible to enter Major League Baseball.
Matsui also told Thosar that while he hasn’t seen a player find success as a hybrid pitcher/slugger in the majors, he’s taken notice of Otani’s success in both areas. “He’s done well in Japan, so as a baseball fan I’m looking forward to how he’s going to do here in the Majors and in the U.S.,” Matsui said, later adding, “If [pitching and hitting is] something he wants to do, and the team wants it, then why not?”
Neither the Yankees nor any other suitor should be too concerned with Otani’s ability to translate his .332 batting average and 3.20 ERA to MLB — at least, not just yet. There are still a few roadblocks in his path to the major leagues, most notably the lack of approval from the Players Association. Per FanRag Sports’ Jon Heyman, the union doesn’t want to sign off on an agreement that would give the Nippon Ham Fighters a $20 million posting fee in exchange for Otani’s services. According to the posting system rules, Otani himself would be eligible to receive no more than a $4 million signing bonus.
The good news in all of this? The union agreed to reach a final decision by Monday, November 21, so there’s still a chance Major League Baseball will see the talented two-way player bring his unique skillset to the field in 2018.