Ken Takahashi Rumors

Mets Release Ken Takahashi

The Mets released lefty reliever Ken Takahashi, according to Ben Shpigel of the New York Times (via Twitter).

Takahashi, 40, signed a minor league free agent contract with the Blue Jays in February.  The Mets scooped him up after the Jays released him in March.  Takahashi tossed 56.6 Triple A innings, including seven starts.  He had a reverse platoon split in his 27.3 big league innings, as lefties knocked him around to the tune of .302/.387/.472.


Takahashi, Mets Agree To Terms

According to Bart Hubbuch of the New York Post the Mets agreed to terms with Ken Takahashi on a minor league contract. Takahashi was signed by the Blue Jays this offseason before they released him today. The 39-year-old appeared in one exhibition game for the Jays.


Odds And Ends: Anderson, Griffey, Varitek

Links for Saturday…



Ken Takahashi Signs With Blue Jays

According to Kyodo News, lefty Ken Takahashi signed a minor league deal with the Blue Jays.  Takahashi, 40 in April, posted a 3.50 ERA and 5.52 K/9 in 115.6 innings (20 starts) last year in Japan.

NPB Tracker profiled Takahashi back in December.  Patrick Newman adds a few details: the Jays will evaluate Takahashi as a starter, and he could earn up to $1.5MM.


Takahashi Down To Four Teams

According to Kyodo News, free agent lefty Ken Takahashi has narrowed his choices down to four MLB teams.  He is seeking a Major League contract; Patrick Newman has further details.

Takahashi, 41 in April, posted a 3.50 ERA in 115.6 innings in Japan last year.


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Cubs Close To Deal With Takahashi?

Patrick Newman of NPB Tracker is relaying a report from Japanese-based Sports Hochi that states the Cubs are close to inking a one-year deal with left-handed pitcher Ken Takahashi.  However, Newman translates quotes from Takahashi that suggest he has not yet chosen a team.

Newman calls it "very early speculation," but it’s definitely a situation worth eying.  Sports Hochi believes that Takahashi would be used mostly in middle relief by the Cubs and could be in line for some spot starts.  According to the report, the Cubs are looking for emotional support for Japanese outfielder Kosuke Fukudome.  Others have drummed up a similar idea in the past.


Odds and Ends: Teixeira, Dickey, Takahashi

Links for Friday…

  • In the aftermath of the Yankees’ spending, Joe Posnanski reminds us that two thirds of MLB teams have won the World Series in the last 30 years.
  • UmpBump doesn’t like the idea of a salary cap.
  • FanGraphs now shows a hitter’s wins over replacement level, as well as the player’s dollar value.  You don’t need to be a stathead to enjoy this.  For example, here’s the Carlos Pena page.  Scroll to the bottom.  Value Wins shows he was worth 6.0 wins over replacement level in 2007.  That made him worth $24.6MM, but he earned just $800K.
  • If you are a stathead, you’ll like this 1981 SI article on Bill James.
  • A look at the only five players who should be considered within the first five picks of a fantasy baseball draft next year.
  • Mark Teixeira leftovers…Murray Chass says Tex and his wife didn’t want to live in Boston, while Kat O’Brien details the hard stance the Yankees took with Scott Boras.  The Nationals did everything they could to sign Teixeira, but he wanted to win now.
  • ESPN’s Keith Law explains why the draft pick compensation system is broken.  Brewers GM Doug Melvin had interesting comments on this in a recent Buster Olney blog.
  • The New York Times Company is trying to sell its stake in the Red Sox.
  • La Velle E. Neal III tries to figure out the Twins’ signing of knuckleballer R.A. Dickey.
  • Patrick Newman of NPB Tracker takes a closer look at lefty reliever Ken Takahashi.

Odds & Ends: Webb, Mitsui, Burnett

Some links for the afternoon…


Japanese Free Agent Round-Up: Kawakami, Takahashi, Saito

Patrick at NPB Tracker has an interesting update on some notable Japanese free agents.

NBP Tracker has the source links, which are in Japanese. Kudos to Patrick for keeping those of us that can’t read Japanese in the know.

Alex Walsh can be reached at alexander.walsh@gmail.com.


D’Backs Rumors: Clark, Punto, Rhodes, Unit

8:10pm: Piecoro says the D’Backs don’t want to trade Snyder; in fact, they’d like to extend him.

Piecoro notes talks with Eddie Guardado, but they didn’t go far.  And Japanese lefty Ken Takahashi is not on Arizona’s radar.

7:20pm: The D’Backs have discussed a contract with Tony Clark for ’09, says Gilbert.

6:20pm: Rosenthal says the D’Backs want to trade the more pricey Snyder to clear a path for Montero.  They could then ink a Gregg Zaun type to back him up.

3:30pm: Gilbert says the D’Backs have a one-year offer out to Loretta.

3:18pm: MLB.com’s Steve Gilbert says the D’Backs have not resumed talks with Randy Johnson.

12:12pm: Piecoro says talks between the D’Backs and Mark Loretta have advanced in recent days.  They’ve made a "significant overture" according to Loretta’s agent.

2:26am: Nick Piecoro of the Arizona Republic has the latest on the Diamondbacks, in blog posts here and here.

  • Piecoro dissects the D’Backs’ thought process behind their decision not to offer arbitration to Type A free agent Adam Dunn.  He notes that their rumored two-year offer to Dunn was "more of an exploratory offer, nothing formal."  They’ll stay in touch with Dunn in case the market is not to his liking.
  • Free agent targets: Nick Punto, Arthur Rhodes, and the aforementioned Joe Beimel
  • Punto is one of many candidates for second base.  Ramon Vazquez was the top target, but he was two guaranteed years rather than one with an option.
  • Piecoro wonders if the D’Backs might now be able to scrape together another $3MM or so for Randy Johnson, given the Dunn draft pick savings and Brandon Lyon’s decision to decline arb.