Brooks Conrad to sign with the Hanshin Tigers

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Brooks Conrad became notable to Braves fans for some big home runs in the 2010 season and then became somewhat infamous in the playoffs that year due to some high-profile defensive miscues. Last year he shuttled back and forth between the bigs and Triple-A with the Brewers.  Now, he’s looking eastward. Far eastward:

 

That link goes to a Japanese article most of you can’ read, so don’t bother.  But Patrick is basically always right about the NPB news.

Good for Conrad. I got to meet him in spring training back in March. He’s a nice guy who seems really likable and who works hard. Here’s hoping he can find some success in Japan.

Michael Kopech has opted out of the 2020 season

Kopech has opted out
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Michael Kopech has opted out of the 2020 season. The White Sox starter informed the team of his decision today, and the team issued a press release to that affect a few minutes ago.

The statement from general manager Rick Hahn. said “we recognize that reaching this decision is incredibly difficult for any competitive athlete, and our organization is understanding and supportive. We will work with Michael to assure his development continues throughout 2020, and we look forward to welcoming him back into our clubhouse for the 2021 season.”

Kopech, 24, has only four big league starts under his belt, all coming in late August and early September of 2018, but after a strong spring training he was likely to make Chicago’s rotation at some point in the 2020 season after sitting out all of 2019 following Tommy John surgery. Kopech was among the players sent to Chicago from the Red Sox in the Chris Sale trade back in December 2016. Others involved in the deal included Yoán Moncada, Victor Diaz, and Luis Alexander Basabe.

Now, however, Kopech has opted out.