(Michael: This is a post from back on January 3rd. Given that the Cubs just signed Yu Darvish to a six-year/$126M deal, I thought it would be a swell time to revisit).
Heading into the 2017-2018 offseason, right-handed starter Yu Darvish was pretty widely considered to be baseball’s top available free agent. A couple of rough World Series starts aside, he’s been one of the better pitchers in the game since coming over from Japan in 2012.
But here we are on January 3rd, and Darvish still doesn’t have a team in place for next season. Prevailing wisdom seems to suggest that the newly stricter luxury tax threshold could be playing a role in the free agent’s stalemate, or maybe even some teams really were turned off by his postseason performance.
But I’m willing to bet that it’ll all change when they learn he can ALSO pitch as a lefty:
Yu Darvish is throwing 68 with his left arm and mixing in a changeup and slider. I'm amazed pic.twitter.com/Ivjgut8sAq
— Kenny Ducey (@KennyDucey) January 3, 2018
I’m kidding of course, as Darvish will definitely be sticking with his right-handed dominance, but also … holy crap. Throwing 68 MPH with your off-hand is downright nasty. But mixing in a change-up and a slider is out of this world.
This dude can pitch and it’s just a matter of time until someone scoops him up.