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Kaz Matsui Update?

Discussion in the Rumor Mill forum
Kaz Matsui Update?
Can you inform me on the latest on Kaz Matsui?

His stats, his season, his status on joining the Mariners, Mets, or Padres in 2004?

Thanks
Comments
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest: Jim Albright | Posted: Jun 19, 2003 10:36 AM ]

I'm sure Michael or somebody can give his current data.

As for where he's going at the end of this year, I'm not aware of any changes, namely that such matters aren't likely to be resolved until after the end of the season.

Jim Albright
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest: Joe Barbero | Posted: Nov 29, 2003 10:48 AM ]

Matsui, a natural shortstop, recently indicated to the media that he would be open to playing second base for a Major League team. This means one of two things:
  1. He is opening the door for a chance to play for the Yankees, or
  2. He is just saying that to get the Yankees into the negotiations in order to drive up his price for other clubs.
My guess is he will be with the Yankees. Why? Because they badly need a lead off hitter. Plus, with Boston trading for Schilling today, the Yankees will be very poised to out do their arch rivals. Also, look for the Yanks to get Sheffield, Pettite, and Bartolo Colon, Javier Vazquez, or Freddy Garcia.
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest: Spoofer | Posted: Dec 4, 2003 8:35 AM ]

Add Kevin Brown to the list of possible new Yankees.

[Admin: And how does this factor into Matsui's chances?]
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: 1908 | Posted: Dec 4, 2003 11:01 PM | HT Fan ]

- Admin: And how does this factor into Matsui's chances?

Trading Brown would free up money for the Dodgers, making it a lot easier for them to sign a big-name free agent like Kazuo.

[Admin: Thanks.]
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest | Posted: Dec 5, 2003 4:55 AM ]

OK. Do you know that they don't need him? They just got Javier Vasquez in a trade with Montreal.
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: screwball | Posted: Dec 4, 2003 1:53 PM ]

Wait one second. The Yankees don't need a leadoff hitter. They have at least three more-than-capable players for that. What they need is a #7 hitter, and that's about all. Otherwise the Yankees are one of the most solid teams I've ever seen, and I hate the Yankees.

And what are they going to do with Little Matsui? They already have a good shortstop in Derek Jeter, and they should put Giambi as the DH. Nick Johnson can play first. All together, they don't need Matsui.
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest | Posted: Dec 5, 2003 5:00 AM ]

The Yankees are nothing but a high paid team. Take the money away and they'll be just like any other low rated team. In the Yankees' case, they don't need two Matsui's. What they need is to stop getting players that they're not going to use, just so that other teams can't have them.

Now to the issue. K should join a team that he would have a impact on like the Mets or the Padres. Even if the Yankees get him, were are they going to put him? The two positions that he's best at are already taken by super-stars.
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest: shizzle bizzle | Posted: Dec 6, 2003 5:09 AM ]

The Mets offered him a multi-year contract and the New York Post claims that Matsui will be giving his answer in 24-48 hours.
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: westbaystars | Posted: Jun 19, 2003 12:40 PM | YBS Fan ]

New around here, huh?

Click on "Teams" at the top of this page. From there you can get Matsui's current stats (updated daily) by clicking on the "Stats" link to the right of "Seibu Lions." For his career stats, click on "Players" to the right of "Seibu Lions," then on "Matsui" in the list of infielders.

Other threads in this forum (to which I moved it since you question isn't really "news") will concur with what Albright-san said, that he most likely won't announce anything until after the season is over. And that pretty much goes for all of the possible free agents. Except in rare cases when a player is upset with management, players don't discuss what they're going to do with their free agency rights until the current season is over. That's a question best asked in October.
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest: Mike | Posted: Jun 19, 2003 2:15 PM ]

I suppose Kaz Matsui deserves about 3 million a year. Ichiro got 5 million, but he had much better credentials than Kaz Matsui. In my opinion, Hideki Matsui is grossly overpaid. I think he should be making about 3 million a year.

At 3 million a year, I think the Oakland A's could sign Kaz Matsui, since Miguel Tejada is a free agent at the end of the season. I don't think he deserves any more than 3 million a year.
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: 1908 | Posted: Jun 19, 2003 8:22 PM | HT Fan ]

- I suppose Kaz Matsui deserves about 3 million a year. [...] I don't think he deserves any more than 3 million a year.

Whether you think he deserves it or not, Kaz will make more than $3M per -- by a wide margin. The Dodgers, Mariners, Cubs, Padres, etc. will make sure he never puts on an A's uniform.
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest: Jim Albright | Posted: Jun 20, 2003 12:05 AM ]

Ichiro probably came at a discount because people were skeptical of Japanese players. We'll see whether H. Matsui winds up playing at a level commensurate with his salary, though as noted in other threads, we're down to seeing whether or not he picks up the HR numbers.

Frankly, as I've written before, Kazuo Matsui is probably among the best half-dozen shortstops in the world today. Granted, he won't be the youngest such guy out there, but I think a shortstop with those credentials would get more than that. Further, I can hardly imagine that the Seibu Lions wouldn't pay him quite a bit more than that to stay. He wouldn't have to worry about the adjustments to the U.S. or MLB or a new team, etc., either. I can't see him coming to MLB for $3 million. Five million dollars a year, yes, but not three. Remember, the Japanese teams have some money, too.

Jim Albright
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Captain Japan | Posted: Jun 20, 2003 1:32 PM ]

- [...] Remember, the Japanese teams have some money, too.

Right. But this assumes it is entirely about money. I really think these guys - Nakamura aside - really want to give the majors a shot.

I get the feeling that H. Matsui's decision wasn't about money. I really think H. Matsui wanted to play for the Yankees and see how his skills measured up. Same with Ichiro, as far as skills go.

I think the Dodgers would be perfect for K. Matsui, seeing as their tandem of Cabrera and Izturis just aren't cutting it with the bat.

Captain
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest: Jim Albright | Posted: Jun 21, 2003 2:08 AM ]

No, I don't assume it is entirely about money at all. I agree that many of the Japanese stars do want to test themselves against the majors. That said, however, I think most of them realize that there are adjustments to be made in such a move, and they at least want to be paid close to what they'd get in Japan to make the move. That's the assumption I do make.

Jim Albright
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest: Will | Posted: Jun 21, 2003 12:09 AM ]

I see that Kaz's numbers are way down this year. I hadn't seen much written in the English language press about it. Any details? Or is there another string of messages on this board that I've missed?

Thanks.
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest: Jim Albright | Posted: Jun 21, 2003 11:24 AM ]

I'd say his power stats are in line with his norms, 2002 perhaps being a career year for him. His average is down 10% or so, but let's see if that doesn't come up to the .300 area before the season is over. Other than the average, I don't see that his stats are off all that much, unless you think 2002 was normal for him.

Jim Albright
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest: Will | Posted: Jun 21, 2003 10:29 PM ]

I wasn't so concerned about the power, but rather the stolen bases. Does he have a leg injury? He's on pace for only 4 or 5 SB this year. That's a pretty big drop from the 33 he stole last year. According to this site he's never stolen less than 20 in a season.
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest: Jim Albright | Posted: Jun 21, 2003 11:56 PM ]

You're right about that. I guess this shows how little we statheads regard the stolen base -- though it could indicate leg troubles, as you say. I know I never even looked at that column. Leg difficulties might also have a part in the drop in average (no infield hits, other difficulties in hitting).

I can't help answer your question because I'm in the wrong place (East Coast, US), and don't read/speak Japanese. Certainly scouts would know, and I'm sure the roti players out there would love to know if there is a problem or not (and what it might be).

Jim Albright
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: 1908 | Posted: Jun 22, 2003 2:12 PM | HT Fan ]

- I wasn't so concerned about the power, but rather the stolen bases.

Isn't Kaz batting third instead of leading off this year? He might be running less because he's hitting directly in front of Cabrera.
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: westbaystars | Posted: Jun 22, 2003 6:12 PM | YBS Fan ]

- I wasn't so concerned about the power, but rather the stolen bases. Does he have a leg injury?

Matsui did spend some time earlier this season as DH to keep his consecutive game streak alive as he was too hurt to play in the field. I think it was his shoulder that was the problem then, but I recall something about knee problems at the end of last season and the beginning of this one. Let me see, ...

I see that he played DH earlier this month [Lions' Official site - in Japanese] after fouling a ball off his ankle. Going back a little farther I find that it was his knees bothering him last September (2002).

Where did our Lions' fans go? Have the Tigers chased all of the Lions away?
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest: Marine | Posted: Jun 25, 2003 5:15 PM ]

These guys are all "pros," whether in Japan or not. Money should not be an issue. Babe Ruth, Ted Williams, Roger Maris, Mickey Mantle, Lou Gehrig, Roberto Clemente, Hank Aaron, Lou Brock, Rod Carew, etc. played for a lot less.

All men and women of the Armed Forces play hard for pennies. There is a lot of talent in the Armed Forces. But too many of us are prejudged, by scouts and people like you. I can put a solid baseball team of Armed Forces personnel that will play for nothing and beat a bunch of the hot hogs and pre madonnas in MLB and NPB put together.

They all play hard in what they do, baseball, because they love the game.

Play ball!
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest: Jamey Storvick | Posted: Aug 20, 2003 1:57 AM ]

Dude, what in the world are you talking about? The Marines could not even beat the Army in softball. Now you have them beating the MLB and NBL teams in baseball? Wake up and smell the coffee.

Defending a country is a great thing, but doing it for pennies was a choice. Thanks for the input though. And as a scout for an MLB team, I'd sure be willing to have a look at any Marine living in Asia. I've played ball against the best the military has to offer, and although there is some talent, I have yet to see one that could hold his own in AA much less the Majors.
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: 1908 | Posted: Aug 20, 2003 10:35 AM | HT Fan ]

- And as a scout for an MLB team, I'd sure be willing to have a look at any Marine living in Asia.

First we have some guy claiming to be Steinbrenner; now there's someone else claiming to be the Mariners' Pacific Rim scout? Maybe I'm just a cynical guy, but c'mon.
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest: JS | Posted: Oct 7, 2003 1:51 PM ]

You are cynical 1908. But you're a baseball fan with passion, so let's overlook it.
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest: Beltranfan | Posted: Jul 23, 2003 8:40 PM ]

He doesn't wants to run because he doesn't want to get hurt and risk his sure future in the MLB. That's the only reason why he isn't running at all.
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest | Posted: Aug 7, 2003 1:58 AM ]

You are correct. Ichiro was posted, so he could only negotiate with Seattle. Godzilla Matsui was a free agent who used the Yankee's interest to his benefit.

Kaz Matsui will have several teams bidding for him, so his value will go up. As for how he performs if he joins MLB, it is a question mark.
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest: Anthony | Posted: Nov 5, 2003 5:51 AM ]

I think Kaz will be signed by the Mets or the Padres by mid January. It would be nice for him to go to Atlanta, but it won't happen.
Matsui to Giants
[ Author: westbaystars | Posted: Jul 1, 2003 10:03 PM | YBS Fan ]

I promised to keep you all informed when something was written about Matsui's free agency decision. Well, yesterday must have been a pretty slow day because Nikkan Sports' front page declared that Kazuo was going to the Giants - either at short or center field.

Yes, reading the article, it is clear that this is all fiction, something that someone dreamed up to sell newspapers. Watanabe-owner is quoted as saying, "This year is hopeless. It's better to just forget about it. Thinking about it makes my stomach ache. It's best to just think about next year. [...] Yomiuri didn't pursue Kanemoto or Irabu. There are many things that we can learn from Hanshin. Under Horikawa [who will be taking over ownership after this season] it won't be about money, but performance [...]."

From that quote, through some bizarre work of logic, it was deduced that the Giants will pursue Matsui this off season. The big problem, though, is that the Giants have a great shortstop in Nioka. So move Nioka to third? Well, the Giants are looking to put Waseda University third baseman Toritani at third next season, believing that he's ready for prime time. So, that moves Matsui to center. Who's thinking this stuff up? Move the best shortstop in Japan to center because they've got too much talent in the infield already?

Then there's the long list of MLB teams where are interested in him, which will most likely lead to an all out battle between NPB (read: the Giants) and MLB for this all around player.

What I'm wondering is if, as was pointed out by an observant fans on another thread, anyone on either side of the Pacific has noticed how much Matsui is down from normal this year. Is this sign of things to come? Or is it an off year?
Re: Matsui to Giants
[ Author: Guest: Jim Albright | Posted: Jul 2, 2003 3:13 AM ]

The only way it makes sense for Yomiuri to go after Kazuo Matsui is to play him at short, and trade their existing shortstop or move him to another spot, and trade the guy slated for that spot next year. However, the dollars [yen] to do that, while better spent than the money that went to Petagine this year, could most likely be spent in a wiser fashion than for Kazuo Matsui -- unless the trade they'd make also winds up being a steal in terms of talent exchanged. However, that is in general the way the recent versions of the NY Yankees have been constructed. Overall, though, I agree that it sounds like some writer's fantasy/way to sell papers.

Jim Albright
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest | Posted: Aug 7, 2003 9:15 AM ]

I personally really doubt that Kaz will stay in Japan. He has told newspapers and such that he wants to give the majors a shot. I am guessing that the Mets won't get him, and the team that does get him will be on the west coast, guaranteed.
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest: Gary Garland | Posted: Aug 13, 2003 2:43 AM ]

I hadn't heard that Matsui had injury problems this season, but that would account for his lower stolen base and extra base numbers. I know that at the end of last season, he was complaining that his back and ankle were bothering him, and he was feeling fatigued as well. When he got a short rest after his horrid Japan Series, he came back and smoked MLB pitching.

During the spring, Matsui was really driving himself hard with five and six hour individual workouts, often times centered around more subtle parts of his game such as his footwork. It could be that he is indeed tired right now and needs some rest. Unfortunately, Seibu is trying to catch Daiei and that consecutive games streak carries some pressure of its own as well.

Matsui will not go to Yomiuri. He will either re-sign with Seibu or go to MLB. Toritani won't make the Giants roster his first year, so they will need a quicker fix than that. So Saito will probably be given that job, with Masahiro Nagata, who is going to be a great player in a couple of years, waiting in the wings. If Kiyohara is put out to pasture or hangs it up, Petagine moves to first and they can then go to MLB for another outfielder to complement Takahashi and Shimizu. The team needs pitching, and that is what it should focus its draft on.
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Kiyoshi | Posted: Aug 24, 2003 9:02 PM | HAN Fan ]

The Seattle Mariners could definitely use Kazuo Matsui. The often injured and ill Carlos Guillen is playing third base now, and Rey Sanchez is very capable but temporary fix at shortstop.
Angels' Bid
[ Author: Guest: jeff elliott | Posted: Aug 25, 2003 12:04 PM ]

I read that the World Champion Anaheim Angels are very interested in Matsui as well. A local paper reported that the Angels will soon offer a 3 year, 17 million dollar deal. Is there any truth to this? The Angels can juggle their infield and move Eckstein to second base, where he normally played in the past. It would be a good fit.
Re: Angels' Bid -- Tampering
[ Author: Guest: Gary Garland | Posted: Aug 25, 2003 2:04 PM ]

A Lions' spokesman came out today and said that the Angels were tampering with Matsui and threatened to file a formal complaint with the MLB commissioner. I have an article about all this here [BaseballGuru.com].

There was also an interesting conflagration set off by a statement that Yomiuri owner Tsuneo Watanabe made on Friday about circumventing MLB rules to give Toritani to the Yankees in 3-4 years if Toritani wants to go to MLB. Then today, they issued the usual spin about, "well that's not really what Watanabe meant" and denied that allowing Toritani to get away to MLB would be part of the Giants' negotiations with him.

The thing that is really dumb about that, though, is that more senior Giants players who have indicated an interest in MLB and are rumored to be itching to go there sooner than later (Uehara, Y. Takahashi, and maybe Nioka and Nishi) would have to ask, "why are you offering an unproven talent that luxury and not me?"

By the way, there have been some rather circuitous rumors about Uehara going to MLB somehow, but they are too vague right now to really get a definite fix on. Watanabe compares the posting system "[to] buying and selling prostitutes." Yomiuri could release a player with an understanding that they would go to the Yankees since that player would technically be a free agent. The question, though, is would Selig smell a rat (takes one to know one, after all) and cancel the Japanese players' contract?

But that would be for a veteran player. NPB rules seem to preclude such a deal being made as part of a new draftee's contract. It would be interesting, though, to see how it would all shake out should it come to pass.
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest: jim | Posted: Aug 28, 2003 10:13 AM ]

Kaz Matsui is rumored to coming to the Dodgers. Last I heard he said he loves the Japanese society of California and is really good buddies with Loduca, Ishii, Nomo, and some Dodgers that are on the farm.
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Thick&Thin | Posted: Oct 4, 2003 6:39 AM ]

Hello. I'm a newbie and I've been enjoying browsing around to get a feel for the forum. I've been active in several Seattle Mariners forums and the respectful tone you have established here is refreshing compared to what I've seen elsewhere.

The reason for my post, if I haven't been too obvious already, is to inquire as to the latest rumors concerning Kaz Matsui.

I haven't seen it mentioned by others, but the Mariners have a separate pot of money that they reserve for international acquisitions, money that is not part of the overall player payroll. I'm not sure how it all works, but this came out when they were bidding on Jose Contreras last off-season.

Needless to say, this would make it easier for the Mariners to afford Kaz, key because the Mariners' ownership has been very careful about avoiding payroll escalations.

Acquiring Kazuo would be a huge break for the Mariners because they are badly in need of at least one additional big bat to bolster their offense. They might be interested in Vlad Guerrero and may actually be able to afford him if they can meet their needs for help at shortstop in this more affordable way.

So, I would be grateful for the latest rumors. (I'm praying that the one about him going to the Dodgers has been proven false.

Thanks!
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: btimmer | Posted: Oct 5, 2003 3:21 AM ]

I think most of the West Coast teams want Kazuo Matsui, although San Francisco and Oakland probably won't participate in the bidding. So you've got these candidates, I'll go geographically north to south.
  1. Seattle - Team is old and needs an injection of some offense and speed. The present shortstop, Guillen, isn't all that great. The M's obviously have a large Japanese contingent with Ichiro, Sasaki, and Hasegawa. And a Japanese owner (who has never seen his team in person). But the M's general manager just resigned, so there may be some problems with decision making.

  2. Los Angeles - The Dodgers have a great fielding shortstop in Izturis. Unfortunately, the guy can't hit. Pretty much nobody on the Dodgers can hit. The Dodgers scored fewer runs than anybody in the majors, even the Detroit Tigers. However, the Dodgers are up for sale and their budget for signing players is up in the air. The manager, Jim Tracy, loves Izturis. But the GM, Evans, knows the team needs to score more runs.

  3. Anaheim - The current Angel SS, David Eckstein, met Matsui on a Japan tour and was very impressed with him. He has recommended to ownership that the Angels go after him. The Angels have a new owner, Arte Moreno, who is willing to spend money to make the team better. However, Oakland's SS, Miguel Tejada, is going to be a free agent, and he has openly said he would like to play in Anaheim. Since Tejada has won an MVP in 2002, he is more of a proven commodity than Matsui.

  4. San Diego - The Padres are moving into a new stadium next year after having a poor 2002 season. The owner will spend money on free agents in anticipation of making more money in the new stadium. The Padres have a good shortstop prospect in Khalil Greene and he came up in September, but he might not be ready yet for a full season in the majors. The rest of the infield for the Padres is set with Burroughs at third, Loretta at second, and Klesko at first, although Loretta and Klesko could be moved in exchange for more pitching.
My handicapping for Matsui:
  1. Seattle
  2. Anaheim
  3. San Diego
  4. Los Angeles
The Mets are the wild card in the equation.
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest: Will | Posted: Oct 5, 2003 12:12 PM ]

Nice analysis, btimmer. Much appreciated.

I am surprised, however, by your inclusion of the Mets as a wild card. They have Reyes at shortstop which leaves second base. I was under the impression that not only does Kaz want to play on the West Coast, he is adamantly opposed to playing anything but shortstop. Have either of these positions changed?

Thanks.
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: btimmer | Posted: Oct 6, 2003 3:07 AM ]

Yes, the presence of Reyes is why the Mets are an outsider. The Mets were horrible and will likely be pretty bad next year, too. They might want to go hard after Matsui just to show New York fans that they can get their own shiny new Japanese star.

I left out the Giants in my handicap and I didn't realize that Rich Aurilia, their shortstop this year, will be a free agent, and it's likely he won't be back. However, I don't think the Giants will want to pay for Matsui. Despite the fact that the Giants now draw a lot of fans, the ownership there is still teetering on the edge of making a profit.

The Giants (San Francisco variety) will probably need to spend money on pitching in the off-season as their ace, Schmidt, is going to have elbow surgery in the off-season and their #2 starter, Ponson, is going to be a free agent. They will still have Barry Bonds, so they will do all right.
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest: cyril | Posted: Oct 8, 2003 7:34 AM ]

So, the [San Francisco] Giants are barely making a profit, because they privately funded a significant chunk or all of the construction of Pac Bell Park, so they have to pay off the loan. While the owner has pretty much called off the aquisition of all big name free agents, he was somewhat hesitant when he was asked about Matsui.
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest: Go East | Posted: Oct 5, 2003 2:58 PM ]

I know for sure that the San Diego Padres are officially out of the race. It is confirmed by its GM. I am also not so sure if Seattle is in a position to afford Kaz Matsui at this point due to the anticipated hike in Ichiro's salary, etc.
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest: Cedric | Posted: Oct 5, 2003 10:59 PM ]

I think money talks. And I also think it would change any stance about only wanting to play on the West Coast and only wanting to play a certain position.
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest: Danny | Posted: Nov 8, 2003 12:53 AM ]

I think in the end you are going to see Matsui on the Mets playing second base and getting a 4 year, $24 million deal. And he will be happy that he is New York who has Jae Seo here to converse with also Shinjo. The owner, Fred Wilpon, won't let this free agent get away because of his market value in Japan.
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest | Posted: Nov 8, 2003 12:54 PM ]

Everything you state here is wrong.

First of all, he will not sign with the Mets.

Second of all, he will not be playing second base.

Third, at most he will get a 3 year contract.

Fourth, converse with the Korean player Jae Seo?

Fifth, Shinjo is not going to be with the Mets.

And lastly, Fred Wilpon has let many good free agents get away - Alex Rodriguez.
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest | Posted: Dec 8, 2003 1:41 AM ]

Looks like he is going to go to the Mets with a 3 year 20 million dollar deal.
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: ikuzusorihci | Posted: Oct 7, 2003 1:34 PM ]

It's a huge possibilty for the Mariners to get Matsui. With Edgar Martinez, the DH of the M's, and one of the top payed players on the roster most likely retiring after this past season, Seattle will have enough room in the salary cap for Matsui. However, if Matsui chooses friends instead of a good chance at a World Series ring then maybe he'll go to the Dodgers.
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest | Posted: Oct 8, 2003 1:37 AM ]

Ichiro is up for arbitration so he will be getting close to or more than $10 million. I think Kaz is going to either San Diego or Los Angeles.
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest: bobbyc | Posted: Oct 10, 2003 5:57 AM ]

Does anyone know when the Japanese season will conclude? And also, what sort of time frame is there for Matsui's decision?
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: westbaystars | Posted: Oct 10, 2003 8:31 AM | YBS Fan ]

The Japan Series schecule, posted here, is from October 18 - 26, so the season ends just before that. However, very few players talk about what they're going to do until after the Series.

On the other hand, Seibu has already played their last game, finishing the season in second place, 5.5 games behind Daiei. So, there really isn't anything other than common courtesy holding him back from making an annoucement.
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest: George Steinbrennernot | Posted: Oct 10, 2003 7:51 AM ]

I think Kaz may be in for a stiff dose of reality. With Aurilia and Tejada both free agents and known entities, interest in Kaz may be lighter than expected. Throw into the mix the general financial belt tightening and the uncertainty of how well Kaz will hit MLB pitching and you get decreased demand and lower salary offers.

My bet is that he will go to Anaheim. Eckstein fizzled this year at shortstop, and new ownership should look to upgrade and generate excitement. The So-Cal locale is appealing. Kaz won't help the Dodgers' power numbers that much and they have plenty of Japanese players, so there's no PR value. Seattle has a decent shortstop in Guillen and they are searching for a new GM. However, the Giants and Oakland A's might have interest, due to need, but at the right price as they're both cutting payroll. The Mets have Reyes and Kaz won't move from shortstop.

Look for the Angels, with the Giants as the dark horse.
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest: Andy Kussman | Posted: Oct 10, 2003 7:59 AM ]

You think the Mariners would be able to move Kaz's $8 million contract?
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest: Andy Kussman | Posted: Oct 10, 2003 8:00 AM ]

I don't think Edgar is retiring, he'll most likely come back for one more year. Plus his contract is only $4 million, so it wouldn't loosen up any funds.
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest: Brad | Posted: Oct 10, 2003 12:47 PM ]

Bottom line. If Matsui is willing to make the move to second, he can get a big contract. If he wants to play shortstop, he limits his bidders.
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: 1908 | Posted: Oct 10, 2003 2:26 PM | HT Fan ]

- Bottom line. If Matsui is willing to make the move to second, he can get a big contract. If he wants to play shortstop, he limits his bidders.

I suspect there are a few teams in Japan willing to offer Kazuo a big contract and let him play short. And that's not an if, that's what he wants.
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Jen Wei | Posted: Oct 16, 2003 11:56 PM | HNHF Fan ]

I think he will join a team that doesn't have a good leadoff batter and speed, because he can do that and he play solid in shortstop. So in MLB, the team that doesn't have a good first batter and shortstop will be intrested him.
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Kiyoshi | Posted: Oct 17, 2003 7:23 AM | HAN Fan ]

Carlos Guillen played very effectively at 3rd Base in September and looks like that is where his future is.

Rey Sanchez was just a fill-in until Kazuo Matsui joins the Mariners.
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest: Suraj | Posted: Oct 17, 2003 5:17 PM ]

The Lions announced today that Matsui will be going to the Majors. Matsui was pretty P'd off, since he didn't make the announcement himself.

No surprises here, but it is official. There's talks in the Japanese papers about the Dodgers, while the Yanks and Red Sox are probably out as Matsui wants to stay at shortstop.
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest: Go East | Posted: Oct 18, 2003 1:01 AM ]

Not so fast. I have a confirmed insider telling me that Masui is not sticky about shortstop. In fact, his exact words were that "I have never played other than shortstop, and I do not know if I can play other position." He is willing to move to the second base, but he just does not know if he can be as effective playing another position such as second base.

And today's news about the Dodgers being ahead of others is still a speculation, and is not a confirmed statement at all. My insider info indicates that the Yankees are still ahead of others.

By the way, the A's and Giants are out the race. They announced it a while ago. The teams which are still in the race for Matsui are the Yankees, the Mets, the Dodgers, the Marriners, the Twins, the Ageles, the Redsox, and the Cubs.
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: 1908 | Posted: Oct 18, 2003 10:35 AM | HT Fan ]

- My insider info indicates that the Yankees are still ahead of others.

Care to cite your source? Anonymous posters quoting anonymous insiders don't carry a lot of weight.
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest: Dave | Posted: Oct 18, 2003 5:21 AM ]

Great. He's going to look great with a Halo next year!
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest: Matsui Bros | Posted: Oct 18, 2003 6:45 PM ]

Matsui might actually go East, to the Yankees. That's only if he actually agrees to play second and lets Steinbrenner market his new babies, The Matsui Bros.

Perhaps Kazuo's appearance at Game 2 of the ALCS in Yankee Stadium wasn't just a family trip. According to the Seattle Times, he was 8 rows behind the third base dugout with his wife and child. The deal might be done before we can say "tampering." That boy sure moves fast. And Boss wants a ninja faster than Ichiro.
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest: Slacker | Posted: Oct 24, 2003 1:03 PM ]

What about third? That's the position where the Yankees really have a big hole. I know a lot of shortstops have bee moved to third in the past, such as Cal Ripkin or the Mariner's Guillen this year.
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest: Tom W | Posted: Oct 18, 2003 9:24 PM ]

Just FYI, the Baltimore Sun reported today that the Orioles, with oodles of cash (Belle and Erickson are off the books), and no convincing shortstop (Devi Cruz?) or leadoff man (Brian Roberts/Jerry Hariston?), will make a serious run at K. Matsui.

For those of you who may not recall, Baltimore offered H. Matsui $7 million/year -- the same he eventually signed with the Yanks for. So, if money talks, Baltimore (also interested in Vlad Guerrero, Miguel Tejada, Sidney Ponson, Ivan Rodriguez, and more) may be doing the most talking this off-season.
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest: Cedric | Posted: Oct 19, 2003 10:36 AM ]

The Mets are also going to make a run. They freed up over $50 million after the season. Almost $60M if you count Vaughn's insurance. It will no doubt be a big race for Matsui. He might get more than Hideki.
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest: bii | Posted: Oct 24, 2003 9:03 AM ]

What was the reason for Kaz's low steal numbers this year?
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest: corey | Posted: Oct 26, 2003 5:16 AM ]

Kazuo had leg problems toward the end of the 2001 season. I remember he would have at bats where he would not swing and he DH'd. Amazingly, pitchers still were mixing their pitches and showing respect, despite his limitations on the field.

But having the opportunity to see him play over the years, I cannot imagine him playing second base. He has too much range, an arm that is unreal at times, etc. Perhaps Seattle would enjoy his talents: speed, power, and style.

Matsui Kasuo is also a very jovial person. Recalling his temperment and demeanor, he was never the type to act as if he were better than anyone.

Lastly, Kazuo has more strength than his size suggests. One would think his offense would be about finesse. But he has crazy strength. I saw him hit the ball on a fake bunt and slash with runners on first and second, off of a tough leftie, down the left field line - in a line seven rows out of Kintetsu!

I sincerely hope that Kazuo has many healthy days ahead of him to showcase his talents on American soil. He was a sight to see in Saitama, hopefully he will flourish in Seattle!
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest: KazuoFan | Posted: Oct 26, 2003 10:33 PM ]

I'm sorry, if you are a Mariners' fan. But I think Kazuo Matsui will end up with either the Dodgers or the Yankees.
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest | Posted: Oct 26, 2003 10:49 PM ]

I predict that it will be the Dodgers unless they go after Tejada. I think the Yankees are happy with their one Japanese star.
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Sharks410 | Posted: Oct 27, 2003 12:25 PM ]

I am not a Yankee fan but - I can see Kazuo Matsui definitely replacing Soriano at second base. (Yeah, I know it's not Matsui's natural position.) He will definitely be an upgrade from Soriano.

and

How about Ichiro replacing Garcia in right field? Long shot, but wow, that would almost make me a Yankee fan.

My SF Giants need help but are too cheap to seriously pursue the Japanese market.
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest | Posted: Oct 29, 2003 10:50 AM ]

Kazuo Matsui has officially filed for free agency. I think that my Yankees are going to be a big contender for him. They are having meetings in Tampa this week to discuss the future and what free agents they are interested in, among other things. I can see Soriano in right field (even though they will probably put him in center for his eventually move to the outfield - that is, if they don't trade him - which it looks like they might because they are accepting all offers for him).

H. Matsui in center field, Bernie in left, Boone at third (I do think they will keep him and not let him go like a lot of people think), Jeter at short, K. Matsui at second, and Nick Johnson at first.
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest: elbooboo | Posted: Oct 30, 2003 10:02 AM ]

I read an article today that said he dosen't want to shift positions. He even said that he couldn't imagine himself playing another position. So that might be bad news for Yankee fans. Of course, a boat load of money could change his mind.

I also read two conflicting stories involving the Mets. One said that they were going to move Reyes to second base and would pay almost what ever it took to get Matsui. Another said that the new GM doesn't want to move Reyes and dosen't want to go after big free agents, and they included Matsui in that group.

Who knows where Matsui going to end up? I think that because he is from and in Japan and can't really respond to rumors, North American sports writers are having a lot of fun making up rumors about him.
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest: john tawa | Posted: Oct 30, 2003 9:22 PM ]

Hi. I'm from Boston, and I've heard some rumors that the Red Sox have some interest in Kaz Matsui next year as Garciaparra will be a free agent. Has anyone heard anything like this?
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest: JOE KALESNIK | Posted: Oct 31, 2003 12:27 AM ]

Nomar will stay if Manny goes.

Kaz to New York Mets. Mets will shift Reyes to second base because of his ankle injury.

If Kaz opts to go to Los Angeles, his decision will affect the Texas Rangers, also. I always wanted to see A-Rod in a New York Met uniform.

Kazuo Matsui has the upper hand right now. There are a lot of teams looking at him, and his decision will have a domino effect.
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest: elbooboo | Posted: Oct 31, 2003 12:40 AM ]

I think the Red Sox want to sign Matsui as a second baseman. If Nomar leaves then Matsui could replace him. Matsui has said that he only wants to play shortstop, so I don't know if the Red Sox really have a shot.
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest: Not registered | Posted: Dec 8, 2003 8:47 AM ]

Kaz Matsui will be a Met, if all of you don't yet know. He wants to go to one of 4 teams only, the Mets, Yankees, Angels, and Dodgers. The Yankees showed interest in him but gave up, also the Angels and Dodgers are waiting for a A-rod to Boston trade because if that happens, Nomar would go to one of them, so they aren't that focused on Matsui. Also the Mets are the only serious team, they offered him a 3 year, 23 million dollar contract which is like 7 to 8 million dollars a year. The Mets are playing quick ball, putting a contract on the line before everyone else, and it is pretty much a guarentee that he will be a Met by the end of the Winter Meetings.

Yeah! Let's go Mets, let's go Mets!
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest: JOE KALESNIK | Posted: Oct 31, 2003 8:39 AM ]

The owner of the New York Mets' son has a Japanese wife and lives in Japan. They socialize with Kazuo.

Does it make a difference? He is a free agent and it won't cost them a draft pick.

His rating with 14 other position players in the U.S.A. is 88.76 - that's in the top 10%.

If I were the New York Mets, I would persue him. Of course, there are about eight other teams chasing him.
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest: Johnny Luke | Posted: Oct 31, 2003 9:31 AM ]

Where did you hear that the Wilpons socialize with Matsui?
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest: JOE KALESNIK | Posted: Oct 31, 2003 9:20 PM ]

Quote from sports writer Rod Beaton, USA Today (newspaper):
"Bruce Wilpon, son of Mets' CEO Fred Wilpon, lives in Japan with his wife Yuki, have socialized with (Ken) Matsui."
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest: JOE KALESNIK | Posted: Nov 14, 2003 4:09 AM ]

Kaz will not be a Met. You can hear the players talking about Reyes at shortstop. And liking Castillo from the Marlins at second base. Also, there are 2-3 players from Florida that the New York Mets are pursuing.

Sources: WFAN Radio, Tom Hale (New York Post), Jim Solls (Long Island News).
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest: JOE KALESNIK | Posted: Dec 10, 2003 4:20 AM ]

You can now tell who in the New York broadcasting area has credibility. Hope they apologize to the fans.
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest: Will | Posted: Oct 31, 2003 7:00 AM ]

I am a both a fanatic AL only roto player and a huge Yankee fan. I have a great interest in Kaz playing for the Yanks next year.

That said, I think it would be a big mistake. The Yankees are in dire need of a lead-off hitter. Soriano isn't cutting it (he never could). Kaz, while a great player, is not an MLB lead-off hitter. He strikes out way too much and walks too little. I can't imagine his historical numbers getting better with a switch to MLB. In fact, his K:BB ratio has been on a steady decline over the past few years.

I hope Kaz comes to the U.S., and I do think he will succeed. Unfortunately, I do not think it will be with the Yanks, nor as a lead-off hitter.
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest: Mike Plugh | Posted: Nov 2, 2003 6:25 AM ]

I'm a resident of the city of New York and an avid reader of the "Weekly NY Japion," and the daily "Nikkan Sun." Both papers feature prominent sports coverage and have been tracking the Kazuo Matsui story for months. Both papers have highlighted the hiring of Arn Tellum as a strong indicator of Matsui-san's team preference, and have generally boiled the race down to the Dodgers and Yankees.

There has been loose mention of the Red Sox, Mariners, and Mets, but recent articles have all but eliminated the Mariners for financial reasons, the Red Sox for logistics reasons, and the Mets for competetive reasons. The Red Sox would require Matsui to switch positions as they have Nomar playing short, and the Yankees will offer a better situation for Matsui-san if a switch is in the works. The Mets are simply in a rebuilding phase that doesn't promise to work itself out anytime soon. Finally, the Dodgers would be a far more attractive NL option.

Arn Tellum represents both Giambi and Mussina, who have signed with the Yanks in the past two off-seasons, and Matsui-san was seen in attendance at Game 3 of the ALCS with his wife and Mr. Tellum. When questioned about the appearance, the Matsuis claimed to be in New York scouting the lifestyle, which Mrs. Matsui apparantly loves.

With Steinbrenner's open wallet, the Yanks' failure in the World Series, and their need for a better lead off man, the papers have been speculating heavily on the move of Soriano to center, Bernie to left or DH, and Matsui Hideki to right.

The Dodgers are an option if they fork over the cash, play up the shortstop opening, and convince the Matsui family that Los Angeles is the better way of life.

We'll all know in a matter of weeks.
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest: Cedric | Posted: Nov 2, 2003 11:02 AM ]

If you live in NY, you should know the Mets aren't doing any rebuilding. They have only $60 million commited to players for next season - that means $40 million to play with. And their GM said this week they plan to be active in the FA, trade, and non tender market.
Mets Rebuilding
[ Author: Guest: Mike Plugh | Posted: Nov 3, 2003 2:14 PM ]

The Mets are absolutely rebuilding. The idea that the Mets are going to repeat the mistakes of the past 10 years once again is something that management will not go through. It would be absolute PR suicide.

Yes, they will spend some money next year and get a few big names, but it is very much a rebuilding effort. The team dumped salary and made way for their younger players to get some field time during the disaster that was 2003. Their best two pitchers are spending their winters in rocking chairs rubbing Ben Gay on their arms, and the future is not going to be 2004. It's going to be 2006 or 2007.

The players that the Mets go after this off-season will be on the young side of the equation, and they are looking for the best young arms out there. The days of buying Vince Coleman, Eddie Murray, Mo Vaughn, Roberto Alomar, and Jeremy Burnitz are over. The high priced lineup has flopped in the Mets world too often and this ownership is finally looking to take the right path to building a franchise instead of a team.

Look for changes, but they don't expect to win it all next year for sure.
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest: Mike Plugh | Posted: Nov 3, 2003 2:18 PM ]

By the way, I forgot to mention the interesting info I read in Nikkan Sports about Matsui-san. Apparently, Yomiuri has entered the bidding for his services and hope to keep him in Tokyo with the Kyojin. I don't think he will leave Seibu for Kyojin, because he wants to try his hand at MLB, but it makes for interesting drama in the off-season, nonetheless.
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: CFiJ | Posted: Nov 3, 2003 6:52 PM ]

- I don't think he will leave Seibu for Kyojin, because he wants to try his hand at MLB, but it makes for interesting drama in the off-season, nonetheless.

Actually, he's said that if he used his free agent rights, it would be 50-50 whether he stayed in Japan or went to the U.S. On the whole, I think the Giants have as good a chance as anybody.
Free Agent Clarification
[ Author: DiamondGenius | Posted: Nov 2, 2003 10:21 PM ]

Does anyone know the Free Agent rules for Japanese players coming to the U.S.? It's a bit tough to figure.
  • When the Mariners signed Sasaki in 2000 for 3 years he was set to become a free agent after the 2002 season.
  • Ichiro, on the other hand, has played 3 years and is simply arbitration eligible.
Is this due to Ichiro being a posted player from Japan and Sasaki was a free agent in Japan when he came to the U.S.? Anyone?
Re: Free Agent Clarification
[ Author: CFiJ | Posted: Nov 3, 2003 6:59 PM ]

- Is this due to Ichiro being a posted player from Japan and Sasaki was a free agent in Japan when he came to the U.S.?

Actually it's because they signed Sasaki to a three year contract, and Ichiro to a four year contract.
Re: Free Agent Clarification
[ Author: Guest: null | Posted: Nov 3, 2003 10:24 PM ]

Actually, Ichiro's contract was also for 3 years. The Mariners and his agent are going to negotiate another long term deal this off season.

About the 3/6 years to free agency, I believe Sasaki had a clause in his contract that would make him a free agent after three years. It sounds weird, but I am quite sure that is what I heard the commentators say during a Mariners' game once. Sorry for not being able to back this up with some real sources.
Re: Free Agent Clarification
[ Author: Guest: Cedric | Posted: Nov 4, 2003 9:26 AM ]

Thats not possible. You cannot become a free agent unless you have 6 seasons of Major League service time. That is the collective bargaining agreement. Ichiro still has three seasons of arbitration before he can be a FA. Sasaki cannot be a FA after just three seasons. They may have agreed to non tender him so he can be a FA. But that's it.
Re: Free Agent Clarification
[ Author: Guest: Jim Albright | Posted: Nov 5, 2003 11:27 AM ]

- Thats not possible. You cannot become a free agent unless you have 6 seasons of Major League service time. That is the collective bargaining agreement. Ichiro still has three seasons of arbitration before he can be a FA. Sasaki cannot be a FA after just three seasons. They may have agreed to non tender him so he can be a FA. But that's it.

What you say is technically correct, but if there was an agreement not to tender a contract when this one expired, it effectively is an agreement to make Sasaki a free agent after 3 years. They may be required to use the mechanism you describe, but the effect is the same -- and thus to a layperson, there's no difference.

Jim Albright
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Seibu180703 | Posted: Nov 7, 2003 4:30 PM ]

Hi All,

I've been a huge Seibu fan for almost 14 years now. It'd be really nice to see Kaz coming to N. America, but I wonder who can Seibu use to replace the absence of Kaz?

Other than that, I think, LA most likely will get Kazuo Matsui, seeing how they already have Nomo and Ishii. Soon we shall be seeing Matsuzaka, too, I hope. (But the sad truth is, I don't get to see any of them since I live in Vancouver.)
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest: Will | Posted: Nov 7, 2003 10:36 PM ]

It was a reported in the Detroit Free Press newspaper yesterday that Seibu has contacted Shane Halter. I believe it's just an inquiry at this point, but Shane's natural position is shortstop. "If the money is good, I'd consider Japan, although I'd rather finish my career here in the major leagues," Halter said.
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest: Glenn | Posted: Nov 16, 2003 6:15 AM ]

Just a thought. What if the Blue Jays made an active atempt to get Matsui? They have a good infeild and only need a shortstop to round it out. They have a very large Japanese population base that is, as it stands, untapped. They have a dome to fill and the influx of tourism to see Matsui would help sell more tickets. It would also help to alleviate the fear of SARS in the Toronto area and bring more tourism. So the money spent on Matsui would be well spent. And right now the Canadian dollar is up, so they can spend a little more.

After saying all of that, they have two bigger holes at starting pitching and closer, but hey, maybe? Let me know what you think.
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest: jjr | Posted: Nov 16, 2003 3:19 PM ]

The one good thing that comes to mind about Kaz playing at the Sky Dome is the artificial turf which he is accustomed to playing on.

However, it seems his choices are narrowed down to Seattle, New York, or Tokyo (Yomiuri).
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: KazMatsuiDaDodger | Posted: Nov 21, 2003 11:55 PM ]

Don't forget the Dodgers are the front runner to sign K. Matsui.
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest: null | Posted: Nov 22, 2003 12:52 AM ]

I read this article by Bob Finnigan of the Seattle Times on Yahoo Sports and was wondering if what he wrote was true. He wrote:
"Rumors from Japan have put Matsui, who will be represented by Arn Tellem of Los Angeles, in the same big-money category, reportedly rejecting a four-year, $40 million offer to stay and play in his country."
I want to know if there was any truth to this. I don't see Kazuo getting offered 12-oku yen per year for four years in Japan.
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: CFiJ | Posted: Nov 23, 2003 1:17 PM ]

- I want to know if there was any truth to this. I don't see Kazuo getting offered 12-oku yen per year for four years in Japan.

That's insane. Not even Hideki Matsui commanded a 10-oku yen salary. His highest was what, 7-oku yen? And the Japanese press is usually right on top of these kinds of offers. I don't know for sure, but it sure sounds like a bunch of hot air trying to drive Matsui's market value up.
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest | Posted: Nov 22, 2003 10:34 AM ]

Very good sources from Japan report Kaz has very high hopes of joining the Seattle Mariners. He has talked with the his fellow Japanese friends, Shigetoshi Hasegawa and Kazuhiro Sasaki, and they have reported that the Mariners are a first rate club who treat the players well. "It's not always about the money."
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest: taro | Posted: Nov 23, 2003 9:48 AM ]

Hehe. That's great news!

Now if the Mariners would only keep Winn and let Cameron walk, they'll be all set.
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest: George Steinbrennernot | Posted: Nov 24, 2003 9:25 PM ]

The New York papers are reporting strong interest from the Mets and Yanks. My misunderstood twin is reported to have a blueprint that includes Kaz at second, with Soriano in the outfield. Big Matsui moves to center field.

The Mets are also hot on the trail. They won't lose a draft choice if they land Kaz, like they would if they sign a free agent. They are rebuilding the farm system and want to avoid giving up draft choices. They have spoken to Reyes about moving to second if they can land a guy like Matsui. Castillo will make bigger bucks and is drawing strong interest.

There are also reports that Kaz will not go to the Yanks. He wants to avoid sharing the spotlight with Big Matsui.

I expect both Los Angeles area teams to make a strong bid as well.

Reports for salary are in the $6M per year range, with a 3 or 4 year deal.
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest: John | Posted: Nov 28, 2003 10:08 AM ]

Here is an article from The New York Daily News (2003/11/27) that states that Kazuo is after Jeter's job.

[Body of article cut to prevent copyright infringement. Quoting portions and discussing them is fine. Quoting whole articles without adding your opinion is not.]
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest: kappazeus | Posted: Dec 4, 2003 2:30 PM ]

Since the Yankees are on the verge of signing Gary Sheffield, the only way Kaz will be signed by the Yankees (at present, anyway) will be if
  1. Soriano moves to center, Williams accepts a role as DH, and Johnson is traded (probably for pitching). or

  2. Soriano is traded straight up.
I am a fan of Soriano, and although Kazuo is a good player, he will not produce close to a 40/40 season as Soriano undoubtedly will. Thus for the signing of Matsui to make any sense for the Yanks.
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest: George Steinbrennernot | Posted: Dec 3, 2003 5:51 AM ]

The latest report on Kaz is that he will likely go to the Dodgers. The Mets will chase him, but it's reported in the New York Times that he prefers not to go there.
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest: George Steinbrennernot | Posted: Dec 4, 2003 6:46 AM ]

Here's a link from New York Newsday reporting intense interest in signing Kazuo. It also corroborates the earlier statement by another poster that Fred Wilpon's son is in communication with Kaz. There is also an interesting difference of opinion on the possibility of Reyes moving to second. We will know soon enough.
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest: nick gully | Posted: Dec 4, 2003 1:26 PM ]

I think that he should join with the Mets so that they have a strong, fast, and productive lead off hitter. Furthermore, they'll have a fast productive 2nd hitter in Jose Reyes.
Mets Make Matsui an Offer
[ Author: InterestedAmericanObserver | Posted: Dec 4, 2003 2:18 PM ]

The New York Times has an article [registration required] stating that the Mets are offering Kazuo Matsui a multi-year deal with guarantees of starting at shortstop.
Re: Mets Make Matsui an Offer
[ Author: KazMatsuiDaDodger | Posted: Dec 5, 2003 11:09 AM ]

Gee, the Mets are a cursed organization. Don't go there. I hope Kaz join the Dodgers and help them win the World Series for the best pitching team. Go Dodgers!
Re: Mets Make Matsui an Offer
[ Author: tfk22587 | Posted: Dec 6, 2003 10:26 AM ]

The Mets are fools for making little Matsui an offer. I thought they were rebuilding, but whatever the case, moving Reyes to second is not going to help anything. I am a long time Mets fan, and the Mets aren't cursed, just really bad right now. Did anyone hear what Tejada's getting? Does anyone else think Kaz deserves more than Tejada?
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest: George Steinbrennernot | Posted: Dec 5, 2003 2:40 AM ]

Looks like the Mets are striking first for Matsui-san's services. Now it depends on whether he likes the spot light in the Big Apple or languishing by the pool with tall cool drinks in Southern California. [Link - New York Daily News]
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest: Booby Vee | Posted: Dec 6, 2003 5:16 AM ]

Matsui is not in the Dodgers' plans. [Link - The Press-Enterprise]
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest: Will | Posted: Dec 6, 2003 7:40 AM ]

Kaz is now caught in the swirl of the A-Rod for Manny Ramirez trade. If the Red Sox get A-Rod, they have to deal Nomar. Nomar is a Southern California native who would love to go to the Dodgers or maybe Anaheim. Those are two of Matsui's bidders (if reports are to be believed).

My guess is the Yanks are not one of Kaz's four teams. That likely means it's the Mets, Mariners, Angels, and Dodgers. The Mariners have made a lowball offer to Tejada (3 years for $25 million), which appears to be superior to the 3 years for $23 million offered to Kaz by the Mets. I'd guess they've made a similar offer to Kaz (3 for $25 million).

I'd say that the A-Rod for Manny deal must be resolved one way or the other before Matsui signs with anyone. The Mets are hoping to snare him before that happens since it is limiting Kaz's market, and hence his market value.
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest: Brent | Posted: Dec 6, 2003 11:09 AM ]

Give me a break. They are fools for going after Matsui? Yet you want Tejada? Get Real. Also the Mets said in their Press Conference they aren't rebuilding, just getting younger. You can't rebuild when you have untradeable vets like Piazza, Glavine, and Leiter. Going after Masui is a no brainer for them. They want to tap the Japanese Market. Especially with their Cable contract up after the season.
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: KazMetsui | Posted: Dec 6, 2003 2:10 PM ]

A no brainer it truly is, but some of Met fans can't see the forest for the trees after Free Agency Disasters v.2002 and v.2003.

Can Kaz play at the MLB level? If the 2002 Japan All-Star Series was any indication, then the answer is yes he can play and yes he can be a star. He played all seven games and only hit .423 with 8 ribbies and a 2 home run game against the likes of Bartolo Colon, Randy Wolf, and Brad Penny.

What are the Mets' chances? They have had the "inside track" for months with "Little Wilpon" living in Japan courting "Little Matsui" since the summer. Reyes has proven that he can play at the MLB level and so has Wiggy and Phillips. With a 28 year old "veteran" Matsui, you have a "young nucleus." The rest of the team becomes the developmental part.

The Mets know they need to get a negotiating edge for the 2004-5 free agent market. A .500 finish for the Mets in '04 will get them pointed in that direction.

Hopefully Kerry Wood believes in curses and doesn't sign the multi-year offer the Cubs will be waving under his nose just in time for Christmas.

I can't wait to see the back page of the New York papers: Welcome Mr. "Met"sui!
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest: jjr | Posted: Dec 6, 2003 4:16 PM ]

Seems like the majority of posters on the Mets boards are upset over moving Reyes to second, stating that Reyes is "obviously" the better shortstop with the better arm, and that he should win his job back soon, switching Matsui over to second base.

Being on the west coast, I hadn't gotten a chance to see Reyes. It seems he is highly regarded as their future star shortstop. Anyone have any defensive analysis on how the two compare defensively, and who would make a better SS between the two?
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest: Brent | Posted: Dec 6, 2003 11:56 PM ]

If I had a guess, I think it's possible that during Spring Training Matsui may eventually be switched to second base for Reyes.
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: KazMetsui | Posted: Dec 7, 2003 12:26 AM ]

It wasn't long ago that Met fans continuously complained about their Golden Glove shortstop, Rey Ordonez, because he couldn't hit his weight. Rey hit the gym and somewhere in the process, lost his agility. Met fans are now on the verge of having two gold-gloving, base-stealing, switch-hitting shortstops with some pop at the top of the lineup - and they are still complaining! Welcome to New York everybody.

True: Reyes showed great range this season and an exceptionally strong and accurate arm. Sometimes he showed his "rookieness" with balls going through his legs, but it wasn't the norm. He brought excitement back to this position, once generated by the now exiled Ordonez. He sparked a dead clubhouse with a rookie energy that Shea hasn't seen since the likes of Gooden and Strawberry. But here's the hidden gem: the "Courting of Kaz" has revealed is that Reyes is a true professional.

Also True: 99.99999% of all Met fans have never actually seen Kaz play shortstop. They shouldn't be so presumptuous. Art Howe has seen him play and he was very impressed. Kaz is a three-time Golden Glover. Reports say he's a slick fielder with a great arm.

We Met fans will simply have to adjust to our "abundance of riches" if they both hit the field together. I'm sure the pitching staff is drooling at the thought. Besides, having Reyes at second can only benefit the Piazza move to first.

In the end, we Met fans could only wish this team had such a dilemma.

(Excuse me Kaz, did you say you needed a ball point pen?)
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: tfk22587 | Posted: Dec 7, 2003 6:19 AM ]

Hey, the Mets' MLB.com page [Link] reports that they've signed Little Matsui. Nothing sure yet, but they've got some sort of inside beat or something.
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest | Posted: Dec 7, 2003 11:51 AM ]

Yeah. This hole entire message is true. Even though I have seen Matsui play, he is one of the greatest shortstops that I've ever seen play, and I've seen Barry Larkin, Cal Ripken, and other great shortstops since 1980. And Jose Reyes would have been a top contender in the National League rookie race if he had not injured himself.

But there's been rumors that if Piazza doesn't play catcher, he wants out of the organization. If this is true, then he is stupid.
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: tfk22587 | Posted: Dec 7, 2003 6:15 AM ]

- Give me a break. They are fools for going after Matsui? Yet you want Tejada? Get Real. Also the Mets said in their Press Conference they aren't rebuilding, just getting younger.

I didn't mean I wanted Tejada more than Matsui. I just meant that Matsui deserves a similar contract. Guest Brent sees more to the situation than I did, and now that I think about it, I take back what I said. The "young nucleus" would never be there without the solid second baseman that the Mets currently lack (McEwing?).

Little Matsui, from what you tell me, seems like a perfect fit for the Amazin' Mets. Just one question though: Will Fred Wilpon agree to spend money on free agents after the mess Steve Phillips made from 2000 to 2002?
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest: Craig Ramirez | Posted: Dec 7, 2003 2:04 AM ]

I couldn't agree more with my fellow Met supporter Kazmetsui. I was very impressed with the way that Reyes reportedly handled the news of the impending signing of Kazuo.

Last year Reyes proved that he will be playing in the Bigs for a long time to come. With his quickness and his range, it should be no problem for him to move to second base, where he should be able to become the player that Alomar was 5 years ago.

Furthermore, as a fan, I could really care less who plays where. The truth of the matter is that, in order to be successful in the major leagues, you must be strong up the middle. With the these two guys patrolling the middle of the beautiful green pastures at Shea, the Mets are ensuring that they will be strong up the middle for a good long time.

One more thing. If this past season proved anything, it's that you can still win playing "little ball." Although I have not seen Kaz play, all the reports I am hearing are that he is as fast as greased lighting. With him and Jose at the top of the order, the table should be set for a healthy Mike Piazza and Cliff Floyd to drive in a bunch of runs.

Yes, that's right, contrary to popular belief, this Met fan is convinced that Piazza will come back and silence his critics. I only hope that Mike will take a cue from the 20 year old Reyes and do what is in the best interest of the team and begin his permanent move to fisrt base.
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest | Posted: Dec 8, 2003 2:32 AM ]

Craig Ramirez wrote:

- One more thing. If this past season proved anything, it's that you can still win playing "little ball." Although I have not seen Kaz play, all the reports I am hearing are that he is as fast as greased lighting. With him and Jose at the top of the order, the table should be set for a healthy Mike Piazza and Cliff Floyd to drive in a bunch of runs.

I would say the rest of Craig's post is reasonable, but this idea is one the Mets should be very careful of indeed. Kazuo Matsui doesn't project to be a great leadoff/second hitter with about a .340 OBP likely. It may be the best use of his talents in MLB by getting him to focus on average and walks, and take what homers come from such an approach. Reyes, with 13 walks, is even worse suited to a leadoff/second spot, with his 13 walks. If he hits .300, his OBP is decent, but if his average slips, his OBP would be poor for those spots. Whether you play Earl Weaver, Billy Beane style baseball or "little ball," runs come from men being on base.

A Matsui/Reyes pairing at the top of the order will be fast, but quite likely mediocre at getting on base. Since you can't steal first, the Mets would do better to keep at least one of the two (Reyes, perhaps) out of those batting slots, IMO.

Jim Albright
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest: shizzle bizzle | Posted: Dec 7, 2003 4:07 AM ]

The reports say that he will be joining the Mets' orginization.
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest | Posted: Dec 7, 2003 4:56 AM ]

Kaz is with the Mets.
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest | Posted: Dec 7, 2003 10:57 AM ]

Have been listening to sports talk radio in New York. Many Met fans are against this signing. They prefer to keep Reyes at shortstop and sign a good outfielder instead. They are also questioning the high strike outs by Matsui this year and the reduction in stolen bases.
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest: George Steinbrennernot | Posted: Dec 7, 2003 10:17 AM ]

It ain't over until the fat lady sings. [Link - Yahoo Sports]

One option I haven't heard is Reyes moving to third and Wiggy to second. Reyes has the range for sure and can protect the line. I don't know if they're worried that Wiggy can't turn the double play, but he has played second before and Reyes hasn't. I would think the transition to third would be easier than a transition to second.

Let's see and make sure that we don't have another Nakamura-san fiasco.
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest: Dandevil | Posted: Dec 8, 2003 11:28 AM ]

The notion of moving Reyes to third is what I've said all along makes sense. Wiggy is a second baseman and with Reyes' arm, that change should be determined in spring training. It is refreshing that someone else came up with that as well. I thought I was missing something. I don't know if Reyes has ever played third, but I think it's worth a shot.
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest: George Steinbrennernot | Posted: Dec 8, 2003 1:59 AM ]

Here's some more background on the rumored deal and what has become of the other contenders from New York Newsday. [Link]

One New York rag is already raising red flags on the deal, if it happens. This is typical NY; the reporter is trying to show how smart and incisive he is instead of reveling in the hopes for signing. Anyway, he raised some performance points that I hope some people who have seen Matsui-san can comment on:
  • He has a lot of strikeouts-123?
  • He doesn't walk much
  • His on base percentage is relatively low
  • He doesn't spray the field with hits like Ichiro
  • His homers were in small NPB parks
  • He will be overpowered with the two seam fastball.
Personally, I think this is a lot of handwringing. I'll be very pleased if he goes to the Mets. With one more moderate power hitter who plays good defense in the outfield and a solid closer, the Metsies will be well over .500 next year and may surprise.
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest: George Steinbrennernot | Posted: Dec 8, 2003 2:22 PM ]

The fat lady has sung. [Link - Yahoo Sports]

Welcome.
Reyes to Third?
[ Author: Guest: dak11 | Posted: Dec 9, 2003 12:37 AM ]

Moving Reyes to third base would be a waste of all his speed and range, and would actually hurt the middle infield defense since Wigginton has next to no range. Yes Reye's arm is better suited for the left side of the infield, but third base is a reaction position where players with little range (Wigginton) can play and not really hurt the team's overall defense. If Reyes is not at shortstop, then second base is the next best position for him.
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest: max | Posted: Dec 9, 2003 1:55 AM ]

Has Jim Albright posted an update of his porjections/equivalents for Japanese players? I saw his article thru 2002 [Link] and wonder whether there is an update on Matsui and others?
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest: Jim Albright | Posted: Dec 9, 2003 11:45 AM ]

Yes. I did Kazuo Matsui through 2003, Tadahito Iguchi (second base), and pitchers Shingo Takatsu, Akinori Ohtsuka, and Tsuyoshi Shimoyanagi. The article can be found here [BaseballGuru.com].

Jim Albright
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest: Moe | Posted: Dec 9, 2003 8:26 AM ]

Matsui is a Met now! Yeahhhhhh! Let's Mets 2004 is our year.
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest: MOE | Posted: Dec 9, 2003 8:31 AM ]

Matsui is the shortstop for the Mets for 2004, 2005, and 2006. ^_^ 2004 is the year of the Mets!

Moe
Queens, New York, USA
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: KazMetsui | Posted: Dec 9, 2003 12:39 PM ]

A Lesson To Be Learned

[Admin: I thought this was write-up was so good, I made it its own thread. Please go here for details. Besides, there's nothing left to "update" in this thread.]
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest: ZMAN | Posted: Dec 10, 2003 10:52 AM ]

You've got to be kidding! The Mets need so much help that this can only be considered a begining! Reyes to third is so much the better idea that it fits that the Metsies aren't even thinking of this. The multi hued haired one is about to get the full New York Mets' treatment of the losing tradition.

By the way, what does the Mets' starting staff look like a year older now, and who closes, Franco again?
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest: Frank | Posted: Dec 11, 2003 7:27 AM ]

First of all, the Mets would never move Reyes to third base because he told them when he came through their farm system that he only wanted to play shortstop or second base. And they would definately be better off keeping Wigginton there anyway, being that he was there all last season. If anything, I think Kazuo Mastsui should be moved to second because he's played it and would agree to playing it. But the Mets will most likely move Reyes to second to appease Matsui and make him feel that he needs to be one of the stars on their team. And becuase of this, they are putting him in as comfortable of a position as possible.

I can guarantee a few things about Matsui:
  • he won't get over 15 home runs, probably not even over ten,
  • he's not going to be a hitting force on the Mets, and
  • he's not going to steal quite as many bases as expected.
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest: Chi-ster | Posted: Dec 11, 2003 5:34 PM ]

This is my predictions for Kaz Matsui for 2004:

280 batting average, 8 home runs, 40 RBIs, 20 stolen bases

and stellar defense.
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: MrBaseball513 | Posted: Dec 11, 2003 6:18 AM ]

The Mets finalized the deal that he signed for 3 years, but I forgot the money. For I know he will be with the Mets for 3 years. Look out Godzilla, Little Matsui will be waiting to face you in inter-league play.
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest: ALex | Posted: Dec 11, 2003 7:48 AM ]

He was signed by the Mets!
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest: shuzzle bizzle | Posted: Dec 11, 2003 8:12 AM ]

"JUST CALL ME MET-SUI" was the headline, and you can just tell the Braves to get out of 1st. Expect the Mets to be there.
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: kazuco | Posted: Dec 13, 2003 7:58 AM ]

How can anyone guarantee Matsui won't hit 15 homeruns? And does someone here really think he'll hit .280, 8 HR, and steal 20? Any reason for that, or just a guess?

I'll tell you one thing, if those numbers were true, than the Mets made a horrible investment, because at .280/8, Matsui's offensive value will be near zero considering he isn't going to walk all that much.

Me? I think he'll do a lot better than that. I was thinking .290 or so, but I'll subtract a little for Shea. So I'm thinking .285, 15HR, 30-40 SB, depending on his knee. Predicting foreign players going to the States is never an exact science, but I think K-Mat will be a better U.S. player than Hideki.
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest: erad | Posted: Aug 30, 2004 8:01 PM ]

- And does someone here really think he'll hit .280, 8 HR, and steal 20? Any reason for that, or just a guess?

Well, the season still has a month to go, but it looks like whoever made the .280/8/20 estimate did a pretty good job. As of today he's at .275/7HR/13SB.
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Guest: rtcv | Posted: Feb 14, 2004 4:05 PM ]

I heard a rumor that Kaz Matsui's agent in Japan threatened a Japanese major TV.
Re: Kaz Matsui Update?
[ Author: Sharks410 | Posted: Jul 24, 2004 5:22 AM ]


Kazuo Matsui's last 23 games since the New York Yankees series:

AB H AVG R HR RBI SB BB
104 36 0.346 15 2 14 3 6

Not bad, eh?

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