The Landing of former Japan to Red Sox who came with brutal plans….

The Landing of former Japan to Red Sox who come with brutal plans.

Red Sox acquire former Japan colleague Shohei Ohtani in trade.

The Boston Red Sox are adding to their contingent of Japanese players. Jeff Passan of ESPN reported Wednesday that the Red Sox are acquiring righty pitcher Naoyuki Uwasawa in a trade with the Tampa Bay Rays. Passan notes that Boston had been looking for pitching depth.

Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times adds that the Rays will be getting cash considerations from the Red Sox in exchange for Uwasawa.

Uwasawa, 30, had pitched the last nine seasons in Japan for the Hokkaido Nippon-Ham Fighters of Nippon Professional Baseball (NPB). That is the same team that Shohei Ohtani used to play for (the two were teammates there from 2014-17).

A three-time NPB All-Star, Uwasawa has a career record of 78-80 with a 3.42 ERA and 7.2 strikeouts per nine innings. He signed with the Rays on a minor-league deal this offseason but was not in line to make their Opening Day roster.

The Red Sox, who already have Japanese outfielder Masataka Yoshida, are in somewhat dire straits with their pitching. New signing Lucas Giolito is expected to miss the entire 2024 season after undergoing an elbow surgery, and Boston has now officially missed out on multiple higher-upside starters. Uwasawa probably won’t move the needle for the Red Sox very much, but he figures to be one of the best options left right now as the regular season is about to begin.

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