Japanese star Tomoyuki Sugano returning to Japan after being unable to find MLB deal
Star Japanese pitcher Tomoyuki Sugano won’t be pitching in Major League Baseball in 2021 after all.
Sugano, the top pitcher in Japan, saw his posting window expire on Thursday without a deal with an MLB team. According to Jeff Passan of ESPN, Sugano set his value but it was not met by MLB teams. He will instead return to the Yomiuri Giants for one year, and will be eligible to enter MLB as a free agent next offseason.
The 31-year-old Sugano has been one of Japan’s best pitchers for several years. He has posted a 2.32 ERA in eight seasons, including a 1.97 mark last season. The Boston Red Sox, Toronto Blue Jays, New York Mets, and San Francisco Giants were among the teams linked to him.
Sugano does have some experience pitching against MLB-worthy lineups. He held the United States to one unearned run on three hits in six innings with six strikeouts while pitching for Japan in the 2017 World Baseball Classic.