Hideki Irabu busted for suspected DUI

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Hideki Irabu was pulled over in Gardena, California drifting right and left and all over the place. The cops are going to wait for his blood tests to come back to decide if he should be charged.  Worth noting, though, that if this holds up it won’t be the first time the Fat Toad has had a problem with alcohol and the law. Back in 2008 he was arrested for assaulting a bar manager in Japan after allegedly consuming 20 glasses of beer.  That’s a lot even if the glasses are small!

As for this weaving-through-traffic incident, I suppose his defense would that (a) he’s Hideki Irabu and so by definition
he’s all over the place; and (b) no matter how fast anyone thought he was going we was really going slower, but I’ll leave that for his lawyer.

Rakuten Golden Eagles sign Jabari Blash

Jabari Blash
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Former Angels outfielder Jabari Blash has signed a one-year deal with the Tohoku Rakuten Golden Eagles of Nippon Professional Baseball, the team announced Friday. Per the Japan Times, the deal is said to be worth around $1.06 million. Blash was released from his contract with the Angels at the end of November.

The 29-year-old outfielder has had a rough go of it in the majors, where he failed to duplicate the promising results he delivered in the minors. While he consistently batted above .250 with 20-30 home runs per season at the Double- and Triple-A level, he petered out in back-to-back gigs with the Padres and Angels and slumped toward a .103/.200/.128 finish across 45 PA for Anaheim in 2018.

The hope, of course, is that the environment in NPB will help him get a better handle on his issues at the plate — in a best case scenario, resulting in a full-scale transformation that could make him more marketable to MLB teams in the future. To that end, Blash expects to be utilized as a cleanup batter in the Eagles’ lineup and will focus on assisting the club as they make a run toward the Japan Series.