Brian Bannister Heading To Japan

Free-agent starter Brian Bannister has agreed to a one-year deal (plus a club option) with the Tokyo Giants of Nippon Professional Baseball, tweets Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports.

Bannister, a five-year veteran of the big leagues, pitched for one season with the Mets and the past four with the Royals, to largely underwhelming results, and made 108 starts in his four-year stint with Kansas City. He'll turn 30 in February.

A second-generation Major Leaguer, Bannister was selected by the Mets in the seventh round of the 2003 draft.


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44 Comments on "Brian Bannister Heading To Japan"


METfan201
4 years 7 months ago

Wow . What a bad move for him

jwsox
4 years 7 months ago

why is it a bad move? he was more than likely not going to get a MLB contract and have to settle for a minor league deal. So why not go to Japan and get for sure money.

0vercast
4 years 7 months ago

Because not many ballplayers return from Japan to make a meaningful contribution to an MLB squad.

4 years 7 months ago

Um, Colby Lewis? Cecil Fielder?

0vercast
4 years 7 months ago

Yes, that’s two. Please continue.

start_wearing_purple
4 years 7 months ago

And how many 30 year olds come back to make a meaningful contribution in the majors when they can’t seem to get a major league deal?

0vercast
4 years 7 months ago

True, not many. But I do think the minor leagues offer better opportunities to rehabilitate a faltering career than heading to Japan will, perhaps as a reliever.

start_wearing_purple
4 years 7 months ago

Eh, maybe he just wanted a chance to pitch in Japan. Maybe they’re actually offering a decent living. Maybe he thinks he’s Tom Sellick.

0vercast
4 years 7 months ago

Haha, I liked that movie as a kid.

start_wearing_purple
4 years 7 months ago

Not sure if I should be happy or afraid that someone got my reference 😉

0vercast
4 years 7 months ago

I figured everybody on here had seen Mr. Baseball.

0vercast
4 years 7 months ago

There was a scene that I liked that I couldn’t quite remember, so I looked it up on IMDB.

Jack Elliot: [when the game starts to wane] It ain’t over till the fat lady sings!
Yoji Nishimura, Jack’s Interpreter: [Yoji translates to the teammates] When the game is over, a fat lady will sing to us!
[Team cheers]

Koby2
4 years 7 months ago

That has to be one of my favorite parts. Thank you late night perusing of HBO as a child that brought me the grace of that movie. That and other flicks that shan’t be mentioned here.

4 years 7 months ago

i just wanted to see how small these reply boxes get as you keep going down. oh and going to japan isnt such a bad thing, have you seen their women???

Lunchbox45
4 years 7 months ago

japanese girls loveeee americans too… I’m not even that good looking and when I went to Japan I felt like Ringo

4 years 7 months ago

Big hit, happy body!

Koby2
4 years 7 months ago

Julio Franco, Matt Stairs

4 years 7 months ago

Well if you’re saying that among the players who fail to stick in the majors and have to go somewhere else, not many come back to make a meaningful contribution to an MLB squad, that’s true I guess but kind of a banal point. Plus I don’t see what is so terrible about going to Japan as opposed to Omaha. I cite Lewis and Fielder specifically because they went to Japan and were able to add the missing pieces to their games (controlling an at-bat rather than just chucking for Lewis, hitting high-quality junk pitches for Fielder), which they arguably wouldn’t have been able to do in another trip around the minors.

0vercast
4 years 7 months ago

Good explanation. What I was saying was that the players who are able to find the missing piece in Japan are few and far between. 1 or 2 per decade it seems.

strikethree
4 years 7 months ago

But then again, how many make the trip there in the first place?

More players choose to stay in the US so it shouldn’t be that surprising to see more players make comebacks through the minor leagues.

Plus, I suppose guys with more potential would rather take their chances stateside than go through a new environment like Japan. Therefore, it would be a case of the person making the comeback instead of the environment where he finds his form. If you’re a below average player to begin with, the environment wouldn’t have much bearing on your chances of a comeback.

METfan201
4 years 7 months ago

I mean i get what ur saying yeah for money but… This guy has talent but he has injuries. And i was reading an article on him hearing how he would have many suitors if he was healthy and blah blah blah…but he couldve found a job. Japan is…different LOL.

4 years 7 months ago

Not a bad move because:
He can experience more success there
It pays better than minor league deal
potential to be Colby Lewis

4 years 7 months ago

Even more so, I think playing in Japan is a great experience for most players. Especially guys like Brian who I feel is destined for a coaching position.

4 years 7 months ago

Even more so, I think playing in Japan is a great experience for most players. Especially guys like Brian who I feel is destined for a coaching position.

4 years 7 months ago

Good luck learning Japanese, Brian!

kcrlad1987
4 years 7 months ago

Are you kidding? far out, Royals have made shocking decisions this year and pretty much might as well drop off as a major league team and just become a training facility for the MLB since they help develop great talent only to trade them for nobodies.

0vercast
4 years 7 months ago

It’s a shame for the Royals that this guy couldn’t get it together. I liked watching him in his rookie season in 2007. He had promise.

4 years 7 months ago

MLB is losing one of its sabermaticians. One of the smartest players out there. So sad!

oscarrobles
4 years 7 months ago

His future is in coaching, managing, or probably even in a front office. Plenty of fantastic FO guys had a lackluster career as a player and went on to become brilliant scouts and GMs.

Lunchbox45
4 years 7 months ago

usually its the players that struggle and need to work hard at every aspect who do become really good coaches and scouts because nothing came easy to them

oscarrobles
4 years 7 months ago

His future is in coaching, managing, or probably even in a front office. Plenty of fantastic FO guys had a lackluster career as a player and went on to become brilliant scouts and GMs.

Koby2
4 years 7 months ago

At the least, he’ll probably return as a coach someday soon. He’ll always have a career in that.

Ian_Smell
4 years 7 months ago

Best of luck to you Brian. Hopefully you can come back Colby Lewis style.

besttradever
4 years 7 months ago

He should’ve accepted the minor league off from the royals or pirates.

baseballz
4 years 7 months ago

For a guy who was always a strong starter to seasons I’d have to think that starting once a week as opposed to every five days will have to help Bannister throw up a much better season. The guy knows how to pitch, its just his stuff isn’t the greatest. I’m sure he’ll have a couple great and healthy season’s in Japan and then come back to be mediocre again.

baseballz
4 years 7 months ago

For a guy who was always a strong starter to seasons I’d have to think that starting once a week as opposed to every five days will have to help Bannister throw up a much better season. The guy knows how to pitch, its just his stuff isn’t the greatest. I’m sure he’ll have a couple great and healthy season’s in Japan and then come back to be mediocre again.

4 years 7 months ago

Can’t blame him with the state of our nation’s economy.

4 years 7 months ago

Can’t blame him with the state of our nation’s economy.

JetsMetsGuy
4 years 7 months ago

METS SHOULD HAVE GIVEN HIM A SHOT THIS SPRING!

tdw815
4 years 7 months ago

i agree with you, I thought he didn’t get a fair chance in NY

4 years 7 months ago

Best of luck to him in Japan! It’s a shame he couldn’t continue his early success. The guy is a hardworker and was a great clubhouse guy… and until his numbers got worse was a fan favorite as well. Hope to see him back in a royals uniform replacing McClure someday!

4 years 4 months ago

this baseball player left Japanese team without notification on 15th of March because of the earthquake. then he will not be able to play baseball any other team in the world as the penalty. it is really big penalty.

link to en.wikipedia.org

Smrtbusnisman04
4 years 7 months ago

Ouch you must think PNC park is pretty ugly.. I didn’t know every player is supposed to be selfish today.

MoCrash
4 years 7 months ago

You mean the Pirates’ farm teams play in PNC?