Mets Should Take A Ride On The Orient Express

An article by posted on November 9, 2007

The best free agent pitcher available this year may not hail from the land of the free, and the home of the brave, but from the land of the rising sun.

I know what you’re thinking Tsuyoshi Shinjo, Kaz Matsui, Masato Yoshii, Takashi Kashiwada, Shingo Takatsu…

AHHHHH! Stop it you’re killing me!

Okay, so we all know the Mets have never hit lotto when it comes to these Japanese players, but don’t blame the players, blame the people who were paid to evaluate them and sign them.

A few of the best players in the game today all hail from Japan, and we shouldn’t let some bad decisions from the past, keep us from improving the team when a major talent comes along.

Enter Hiroki Kuroda…

According to David Lennon from Newsday, the Mets have been scouting the 32-year-old Japanese right hander Hiroki Kuroda, and at least six other teams are licking their chops as well, including the Seattle Mariners. By the way, I believe the only time the Mets should pursue a Japanese player is when the Mariners organization is hot on his tail. They seem to have a knack for knowing when to hold them, and when to fold them.

I think Kuroda is the absolute, 100% real deal! If you haven’t seen this guys stuff, maybe you should check out this video.

Okay, now put your tongues back in your mouth…

All this guy will cost us is money. Maybe the same money we would have given to Tom Glavine. We don’t have to post any bids like the Red Sox did on Dice-K. All we have to do is offer more money than anyone else.

We don’t have to trade Carlos Gomez, Lastings Milledge or Mike Pelfrey to get him.

It’s a risk worth taking. 

Kuroda went 12-8 with a 3.56 ERA this season for the Carp in 179.2 innings and is 103-89 with a 3.69 ERA in his 11 professional seasons. He throws a mid-90s fastball, a slider and a splitter, and all three pitches are plus pitches.

We’ve got nothing to lose by signing him as he could be a "low risk-high reward" type signing.

Come on Mets fans, wouldn’t you agree?  

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I'm a lifelong Mets fan who loves writing and talking about the Amazins' 24/7. From the Miracle in 1969 to the magic of 1986, and even the near misses in '73 and '00, I've experienced it all - the highs and the lows. I started Mets Merized Online in 2005 to feed my addiction and interact with other passionate Met fans like you. Follow me on Twitter @metsmerized.

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