Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Kei Igawa: Smart Move?

As you know, Kei Igawa was signed by the Yankees last offseason for a contract total of around 46 million. This includes the 26 million dollar posting fee the yanks had to pay to talk to him. This came as a shock to many as that was more then Dice-K was projected to get (even though he wound up getting over 50). I for one was really disapointed with this careless toss around of money. Sure, he has been a beast in Japan but this isnt Japan. Guys like Igawa arent the aces they are over there. Igawa sits 89-91 and has barely above average breaking/off-speed pitches. This is not the repotoire of a AL East pitcher worth paying 26 million to talk to. Also, his game is flawed as he has pitched up in the zone in Japan all his career and favors it. This will not go well in the MLB. Players like Vlad, Sheff, and Pujols will tee off on 90 MPH fastballs up in the zone. I suppose the slap hitters in Japan werent exactly power hitters. All of this combined with somewhat sketchy control doesnt make this look like a worthwhile investment. Torre has even said hes not opposed to starting him in the minors. Are you kidding Joe? 46 million spent on this guy to be solid and he has a chance of opening up in the minors. This is ridiculus. People say we drastically needed another pitcher. Well during the negotiating period we signed Pettitte. That gave the yanks a solid 1-2-3. With Pavano rounding is out. Then you can say he will fill in the 5th spot but 46 million for a 5th starter. Their is no difference between Karstens/Rasner to Igawa except the hand in which they throw. They are throwing the same stuff with Karstens breaking pitches probably a little better. This is why I was hoping that after they signed Pettitte they would just call off negotiation with Igawa, save their 26 million and spend it soemwhere useful. They could have even saved it, god forbid. I honestly hope Igawa does good this year. We need him too. But my concern is the yankees just paid 46 million for a middle class long reliver.

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