The World Series may have ended, but there is another big series currently happening on the other side of the world. The Japan series between Orix Buffaloes and Hanshin Tigers. There is a lot to look forward to in this series. The chief point of attraction is Yoshinobu Yamamoto, the star pitcher who is about to be a free agent in a few weeks.

Yamamoto has the attention of the world. A player of the Orix Buffaloes, he has had an extraordinary 2023 season. He is one of the main reasons for the Buffaloes reaching the Japan series. Many MLB teams are looking extremely interested in signing him. The player is going through his golden period. Yet in game 6 of the series, he had a moment he’d like to forget for a long time.

Yoshinobu Yamamoto gives away a Home run


Article continues below this ad

To say that Yamamoto is having a great year would be an understatement. The star pitcher is performing on a level rarely seen in baseball. Yamamoto has an ERA of 1.21 in 2023 so far. The season saw him have 169 strikeouts and giving away only 2 Home runs. At least until today, it was only two.

Currently, the Japan series is very close. With the Hanshin Tigers leading 3-2. So game 6 is a must-win for the Buffaloes. Thus they called upon Yamamoto to be their starting pitcher for this game. He is perhaps the safest hand in the Buffaloes right now. But this time, even he had to face a tough situation.

In the 2nd inning of the game, Sheldon Neuse, a former Dodgers player, did something unthinkable. In a moment of fury, he hit the Buffaloes ace with a big Home run. The fans were shocked. So were the announcers and so was Yamamoto.

This was unbelievable. The Orix Buffaloes who are looking to win consecutive Japan series did not need their Ace to get attacked so fiercely. Still, Yamamoto held onto his nerves and threw a great pitch in the next inning.

Read more –The List of High-Profile MLB Free Agents Grows Even Larger, but Who Will Pursue a 38-Year-Old Veteran?

The Japanese Pitcher is on his way to MLB, so this series is the most eyeballs he’s had over him in a long time. Thus for him to get hit by only his 3rd Home run of the season here must be a bit embarrassing. However, it won’t affect his standing among the teams who are interested in bringing him in.

Teams interested in Yamamoto


Article continues below this ad

Yoshinobu Yamamoto is a hot commodity in a market where quality pitchers are lacking. Teams are actively looking to strengthen their Bullpen, as depth is an issue that is currently troubling the entire MLB. So getting a player who is not only young but extremely talented is just what the teams want. 

Yamamoto is looking to sign a contract that could potentially go above $200 million. New York Mets and New York Yankees are the chief candidates for his service. These teams can not only afford him but actually need him after both had a bad 2023 and are looking to break their championship drought. Though the Mets look ahead in this race owing to their more desperate need.

There are many more strong candidates like the LA Dodgers who have a surprisingly thin bullpen right now. The team lacks an Ace right now and who’d be a better ace for them than the Japanese star?


Article continues below this ad

So in the end, Yoshinobu Yamamoto has made many teams interested in him. Who he chooses to join will be an interesting story during this off-season. Until then, keep watching the Japan series to see this young star in his full glory.

Watch the Story – New York Yankees Target Star-Studded Free Agent Targets For 2023-2024 Offseason: Juan Soto, Cody Bellinger And More