Could Pirates Pursue Tsuyoshi Wada?

Jon Heyman of Sports Illustrated had a tweet about Japanese left hander Tsuyoshi Wada, noting the Pittsburgh Pirates as one of the teams that could call on his services.  Heyman pointed out that Wada went 16-5 with a 1.51 ERA last year, and called Wada a “LHP in Jamie Moyer mold”.  He listed the Nationals and Rangers as two other teams who could pursue Wada.

I’m guessing this is Heyman matching up team needs, rather than reporting on actual interest from the Pirates.  Pittsburgh hasn’t gone after any Japanese free agents under Neal Huntington, although that’s not to say they couldn’t sign a free agent out of Japan in the future.  Wada is in a bit of a different situation than most Japanese players.  He’s a free agent, so he’s not subject to the posting system.  Therefore, teams can just negotiate with Wada, rather than having to bid on the right to negotiate with him.

Patrick Newman of NPB Tracker called the 31 year old left hander a Dallas Braden type, noting that he has an 86-87 MPH fastball, a good circle changeup, and a solid slider.  Newman also speculates that it could cost two years and $8 M to land him.  There are questions on whether Wada will be a starter or a reliever, with Newman concerned that he might not be able to handle the innings required of a major league starter.

Tim Williams

Author: Tim Williams

Tim is the owner and editor in chief of Pirates Prospects. He started the site in January 2009, and turned it into his full time job during the 2011 season. Prior to starting Pirates Prospects, Tim worked with, providing MLB, NHL, and NFL coverage to various national media outlets, including ESPN Insider, USA Today, Yahoo Sports, and the Wall Street Journal. He also writes the annual Prospect Guide, which is sold through the site. Tim lives in Bradenton, where he provides live coverage all year of Spring Training, mini camp, instructs, the Bradenton Marauders, and the GCL Pirates.

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  • Ron Leighton

    sounds like a cheaper Paul Maholm without any success at Major league level yet.

  • Anonymous

    he might not be able to handle the innings required of a major league starter.

    The Pirates did not have any starters that could handle the innings required of a major league starter, the league is full of guys that can’t pitch effectively for an entire year, actually for an entire game!