I didn't rank my selections, but there were four guys that I liked better than the rest. One of them was Matt Murton (easy for me to say now, yes); let's take a look at how the others have done Stateside this season:
- Mike Hessman – having a 3A career year with a .985 OPS, but missed time with a stress fracture in his right hand, and is just beginning to rehab.
- Lenny DiNardo – was having a typical DiNardo 3A campaign with a 3.52 ERA and plenty of groundball outs, but has been on the shelf since late May, I believe with a hamstring injury.
- Kevin Frandsen -bounced from San Francisco to Boston to Anaheim, and is currently on the Angels' 25-man roster. My FanGraphs colleague Marc Hulet gave his work with the Angels a moderate thumbs up a couple weeks ago. For what it's worth, I kind of saw Frandsen as a spiritual successor to Bobby Rose in Yokohama.
Suffice to say, none of these guys will be playing in Japan this season. The July 31 player acquisition deadline is looming, and more than half the NPB teams have looked outside of Japan for reinforcements, but I wouldn't be surprised if Hayden Penn turned out to be the last.