Red Sox Rumors: Tomoyuki Sugano opts to pitch in Japan, Boston turns attention to Odorizzi

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Today was the final day for teams to sign Japanese right-hander Tomoyuki Sugano.  The 5 PM deadline has come and gone and he is without a major-league contract.  He will now return to the Yomiuri Giants and presumably sign a four-year deal with his old team.  


Photo courtesy of TheCrawfishBoxes.com


The contract he is expected to sign will allow him opt outs after each season. This will also allow him to re-enter the major-league free agent market.

Sugano has been one of the top pitchers on the open market behind Trevor Bauer this offseason.  The 31-year-old was connected to numerous teams including the Red Sox.  Sugano would have instantly been a major addition to the rotation in desperate need of a quality starting pitcher. 


Last season in Japan, he had a 1.97 ERA in 137 1/3 innings while posting a 14-2 record.  During his time with the Yomiuri Giants he had a 101-49 record with a career 2.63 ERA. 


During the courting process for Sugano, his representation was seeking a deal similar to Yusei Kikuchi.  The Mariners left-hander agreed to a four-year, $56 million contract back in January 2019.  It was reported that Sugano wanted a similar deal, if not a bigger one than Kikuchi. 


Now that Sugano is going to go back to Japan next season, the Red Sox will turn their attention free agent right-hander Jake Odorizzi.  Reports surfacing on social media is that Boston has serious interest in him.

According to The Athletic’s Ken Rosenthal, one club that has been connected to Odorizzi expects him to land a three-year contract.  The Red Sox have been rumored to be uninterested in offering long-term deals for pitchers.  The Boston Globe’s Alex Speier reported the Red Sox, “have been uninterested in exploring deals of that length for pitchers” and “have been focused on shorter-term deals of up to two or three years in length this winter.”


That would also make sense as to why a deal never came to fruition for Sugano due to his demands for four years or more. 


Odorizzi would be a boost to this rotation as the team inches closer to Spring Training.  The familiarity with Chief Baseball Officer Chaim Bloom helps bridge the two side closer to a potential deal.  There have been many options for Boston this offseason, with Sugano off the board, Odorizzi becomes the primary target.  Corey Kluber will be their other major free agent focus once he completes his throwing session for teams next week. 



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Boston Sports Syndicate: Red Sox Rumors: Tomoyuki Sugano opts to pitch in Japan, Boston turns attention to Odorizzi
Red Sox Rumors: Tomoyuki Sugano opts to pitch in Japan, Boston turns attention to Odorizzi
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