Boras: The Nats did too consult with Dr. Yocum

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UPDATE: We have clarification. Yocum walks back his statement.

4:43 PMThis morning Dr. Lewis Yocum, the man who performed Stephen Strasburg’s Tommy John surgery said that the Nationals never consulted him regarding the Stephen Strasburg shutdown.  Scott Boras says that’s not true:

“I know from the discussion I’ve had with the Nationals that there has been repeated communication between the Nationals’ doctor and Dr. Yocum,” Boras said. “There was a conversation between Dr. Yocum and Rizzo sometime in August.”

One person close to Rizzo said Yocum and Rizzo spoke on Aug. 13 and called Yocum’s comments “very curious.”

Someone is lying. Or misremembering. I think Mike Rizzo needs to get on the record here and I think someone had better take another pass at Yocum to see who is telling the truth.

And it does matter. For reasons I’ll explain in another post coming up shortly.

Hideki Matsui thinks Shohei Otani should pitch and hit in MLB

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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.