Kodai Senga has been one of many higher pitchers in Japan over the previous decade, and the right-hander might make for an intriguing entrant onto subsequent offseason’s MLB free agent market. Jon Morosi of MLB.com reported final night time (Twitter link) that Senga is more likely to contemplate contract gives from main league groups over the winter. That’s not particularly stunning, as he’s reportedly sought to make the leap to MLB up to now however been denied that chance by his NPB workforce, the Fukuoka SoftBank Hawks.
Senga is a career-long member of the Hawks, with whom he has spent components of 11 seasons. He’s tallied a bit greater than 1000 innings at Japan’s highest degree, pitching to a 2.62 ERA with a really robust 28.3% strikeout charge. The fitting-hander has a sub-3.00 ERA in every of the previous 4 seasons, together with a sterling 2.05 mark throughout 105 1/3 innings this 12 months. Senga has fanned 28.1% of opponents in 2022 in opposition to a effective 8.1% stroll charge. Amongst certified NPB hurlers, he ranks third in ERA.
Final offseason, Eric Longenhagen of FanGraphs wrote that Senga has a top quality four-pitch combine headlined by his fastball and cut up. Longehagen indicated neither of his breaking pitches (cutter or slider) have been more likely to be impactful choices, however he advised his two prime pitches mixed with strong management might give him an opportunity to start out within the majors. On the time, Longenhagen positioned Senga as his #4 worldwide prospect who is likely to be out there in 2023 and past (and the #3 participant in Japan, behind righties Yoshinobu Yamamoto and Roki Sasaki).
In contrast to Yamamoto and Sasaki, each of whom are of their early 20’s, Senga turns 30 years previous in January. The 6’0″ hurler gained’t be topic to the MLB – NPB posting system by advantage of his exceeding 9 years of NPB service time. That enables him to discover worldwide free company with out requiring any type of compensation on the a part of main league groups to his NPB employer.
Senga has a good bit of monetary safety to fall again upon. He signed a five-year contract with the Hawks final winter that reportedly assured him a $5.3MM wage this season. That pact afforded Senga an opt-out alternative after 2022 to permit him to discover MLB free company, but it surely additionally means he can keep in a well-recognized setting on a multi-year deal if he doesn’t imagine there’ll be MLB gives to his liking.