The Pittsburgh Pirates reach for some interesting arms each off season. Reports tonight indicate the Bucs have signed Ryota Igarashi to a split major league/ minor league deal for the 2012 season.
Remember last year when Jose Veras was signed? We do. It worked out pretty well. This deal seems a similar attempt by the Pirates to get a bounceback candidate for the bullpen at a discount price.
The Mets fans certainly had reason to be upset with the performance of Igarashi during his time in New York. The right hander’s numbers were nothing if not poor, the walks absolutely killed the pitcher once known as Rocket Boy. The strong strikeout numbers obviously kept him around.
A video from the good times for Igarashi.
Igarashi has had some struggles despite absolutely being dominant in AAA where during one stretch last season had an ERA below 1 for Buffalo in twenty relief appearances. He walked just eight while striking out 31 and didn’t allow a run in ten straight appearances. But then he was called back to the majors.
An interesting article about the relationship Igarashi had with his interpreter while with the NY Mets.