Stop the presses: we have a useful bit of information for Boston Red Sox fans.
Ok, perhaps this doesn’t warrant stopping the presses, but we thought they should know.
Masataka Yoshida is going to be very good for the Boston Red Sox this year.
— Jeff Passan (@JeffPassan) March 21, 2023
The team paid, in total, $105.4 million to get Masataka Yoshida from the Orix Buffaloes of the NPB: a $15.4 million posting fee and a five-year, $90 million contract for the player.
What spurred Jeff Passan’s tweet was Yoshida’s play in the World Baseball Classic.
He was Japan’s left fielder in the event, and helped his country win the competition with a perfect 7-0 record.
Shohei Ohtani deservedly won the MVP award because of his two-way dominance, but Yoshida actually had a pretty good case, too.
The new Red Sox left fielder hit .409/.531/.727 with a double, two homers and a 1.258 OPS in seven games for Samurai Japan.
His hits were timely and highly opportunistic: for example, a three-run home run hit by Yoshida tied the game at three runs per team with Mexico in the semifinals.
He showed power and the ability to drive in runs in the WBC, but the Red Sox actually signed him for his contact ability and on-base skills.
Yes: he could potentially hit 20 home runs like he did four times in his NPB career with the Red Sox, but he is more known for his batting average (.327 in Japan tenure) and his excellent .421 OBP.
Yoshida is part of a rare breed of hitters capable of finishing a long season with more walks than strikeouts.
Think of a Steven Kwan with more power.
That would be a star-level player.
The Red Sox appear to have secured a great one in Yoshida.NEXT: Red Sox Congratulate Their New Star On A WBC Title