Sport

Powell: Let the Yu Darvish Circus Begin

Powell: Let the Yu Darvish Circus Begin

Early this week, Baseball Prospectus' PECOTA rankings, which projects player performance from year to year, cast the Cubs' hitting in a much more favorable light than their pitching, which makes some sense. The volume of cameras and reporters was a testament to this.

Also, as Epstein and others have alluded to, Darvish had success in the 2017 playoffs. The big market teams continue to steal the headlines and - as if the Boston Red Sox and New York Yankees' rivalry couldn't get any better - it may after recent rumors surrounding free agent slugger J.D. Martinez.

The Cubs made a last-ditch call to free agent right-hander Jake Arrieta, gauging his interest in a deal similar to what Yu Darvish eventually agreed to Saturday, FanRag Sports reported.

"Yu was our primary target", Cubs President of Baseball Operations Theo Epstein said.

Now he's with the Cubs. He won his NL Division Series and Championship Series starts but lost two short World Series starts, including the finale. He was the Game 1 victor in the World Series, but blew a four-run lead and didn't make it out of the fifth inning of Game 5 - which the Astros won 13-12 in 10 innings. Schwarber described the addition of Darvish to the pitching rotation as the "cherry on top" of the offseason sundae. It was there that the Cubs got an impression of the pitcher beyond what they've seen from the field, and Darvish the same about the Club. Darvish could help them grow, and if they meet expectations, Although the Cubs will pay Darvish $20 million per season as he enters his mid-30s, the Cubs will still have plenty of money to work with due to their relatively cheap pitching with the team controlled pitchers. "It's really an exciting moment for us". He did the entire meeting with us in English, without a translator. "We think this is going to be a tremendous fit".

The contract is ideal for the Cubs, both immediately and after 2018.




"They definitely talked about my strength and what I could do once I joined the: Cubs".

However, the Cubs were able to finally land the pitcher only days prior to spring training starting.

"I've always said if there is no team that meets our requirement", Darvish told the media through a translator, referring to the contract negotiations over the previous weeks, "l'm ready to retire".

That's why he was walking into Sloan Park on Tuesday for his meeting with the media and his team. And with the Cubs' Opening Day roster close to set (!) before the first day even dawns, we will need distractions like these to keep us interested until the real games arrive at the end of March.

From a postseason perspective, one of the most notable advantages to signing Darvish might come from who this leaves to pitch a Game 4 for the Cubs, Dodgers and Nationals.


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