From the all-star-calibre arms of Yu Darvish and Masahiro Tanaka, to MVP winners Ichiro Suzuki and Shohei Ohtani, the posting system between MLB and NPB (Japan’s Nippon Professional Baseball) has brought several studs across the Pacific — delighting North American audiences in the process.
Most of the recent imports have been pitchers (seven of eight since 2014), but this year’s primary transfer target is outfielder Seiya Suzuki.
The Toronto Blue Jays have reportedly been among the most aggressive teams pursuing Suzuki, though several other clubs also appear interested. The 27-year-old is a four-time NPB all-star, and he hit a career-high 38 home runs with the Hiroshima Toyo Carp last season.
Suzuki wields an impact bat that could make a difference wherever he lands. Before that happens, here’s a closer look at the potential star transfer.
From: Arakawa City, Japan
Weight: 182 pounds
Contract status: Posted for possible transfer from NPB to MLB
ACHIEVING STARDOM OVER TIME
Suzuki began his NPB career in 2013 as a 19-year-old, and like anyone fresh out of school, he was still figuring a lot of things out.
Formerly the ace of his high school pitching staff, Suzuki struggled to find a defensive home in the pros. Across his first two seasons, he spent time at first base, third base, shortstop, left field, center field and right field.