Reporting Matt Loede
GOODYEAR, AZ (92.3 The Fan) – Much like the Beatles coming to America, the United States is bracing for yet another invasion. This time – Rangers Japanese pitching sensation Yu Darvish.
The 25-year-old will get his second look this spring today, and it comes against the Indians in Goodyear, where the Tribe PR staff is getting ready for there to be a swelling of media to cover the event.
About 100 credentials have been given out for today’s game, basically unheard of for a spring training game. On a normal day, there’s usually about 20-25 media on hand for a game in Goodyear.
Darvish has had that effect on fans and media though, as the Rangers made a mega bid for his services back in December just for the right to negoiate with the thrower.
The bid was reported to be $51.7 million, and finally on January 18th, the Rangers inked Darvish to a deal worth $60 million for six years with a player option to void the last year.
Darvish was a member of the Japanese national team in the 2008 Beijing Olympics as well as the 2009 World Baseball Classic.
Many considered him to be the best pitcher in Japanese professional baseball, and now the American League champs have added an ace to their staff to take the spot of C.J. Wilson, who left via free agency to go to the rival Angels.
Today, the Indians get their first look at what the hype is all about.
Indians Starting Lineup 3/13:
23 Michael Brantley CF
13 Asdrubal Cabrera SS
17 Shin-Soo Choo RF
48 Travis Hafner DH
4 Jose Lopez 1B
22 Jason Kipnis 2B
32 Fred Lewis LF
9 Jack Hannahan 3B
6 Lou Marson C
43 Josh Tomlin P