The Hanshin Tigers of Japan’s Central League announced Saturday that former Indians Padres and Rangers reliever Jon Edwards has been acquired on a one-year contract estimated at $800,000 according to multiple media sources.
Edwards, who will turn 32 in January, is expected to take over the setup role vacated by Pierce Johnson, whose curve was very effective in 2019, his lone NPB season. According to Fangraphs Edward’s most effective pitch is his slider, so that will be a slight change. With former closer Rafael Dolis now out of the picture for 2020 as well, the club is probably seeing Edwards setting up for the ageless Kyuji Fujikawa next season.
Giants counting (on) Crow
Former outfielder Warren Cromartie will have a somewhat expanded role next season as a team advisor with the CL’s Yomiuri Giants, Nikkan Sports reported. Cromartie, a fan favorite in his seven seasons with the Giants from 1984, was a fixture at the batting cage prior to home games this year at Tokyo Dome.
According to the story, Cromartie (66), who I have ranked as the 126th most valuable player in NPB history despite his limited time here, will join the team on the road and in spring training, his schedule permitting.
The club hopes that Cromartie, who joined Yomiuri from the Montreal Expos, will be able to tutor newcomer Gerardo Parra, who arrives from the Nationals, in the spring.
Back in the day, Crow used to lead the Giants fans in cheers when the teams changed sides after Yomiuri put runs on the board. The scoring team’s fans will chant the players’ names who drove in runs in the inning, and typically the players will doff their caps, wave or bow. But Cromartie joined the fans and they cheered each other. So if all goes well, Crow’s new routine might involve the Baby Shark
And then there’s the other “news”
Here’s a sample of other headlines on Dec, 21, 2019, an offseason Saturday in Japan from online stories in the Nikkan Sports.