Red Sox sign Masataka Yoshida

Scriblerus

Member
SoSH Member
Apr 1, 2009
1,489
Boston, MA
I see both sides of this. It’s just a baseball. It’s also a first for someone who has spent his life working to get to this stage.

Every parent has a bunch of memorabilia from their kids “firsts” and while some are more special than others, I think most people would be upset to lose out on the big ones. That’s the part where I kind of question the parents. I get the kid wanting to keep it, and honestly, it’s his ball now.
 

Red(s)HawksFan

Member
SoSH Member
Jan 23, 2009
21,608
Maine
I'm shocked that so many are perfectly fine with this family, and yes it's a family decision, not doing the traditional, and honorable, thing, and giving Masa his first HR ball in exchange for something of equal or greater value. I mean, sure he has a right to keep it. But it's a dick move. Always has been. Always will be.
How the fuck is it a dick move? Kid wants the ball, he can keep the ball. The dick move is harassing him about it trying to get him to change his mind.

Shit, do we even know that Masa even cares to get the ball back? If he doesn't care, no one else should care either.
 

Merkle's Boner

Member
SoSH Member
Apr 24, 2011
3,924
Ugh, it's just a ball. Why does anyone care? I have a ball signed by Bob Feller. It just sits there in a plastic box. Yoshida got the first hit ball back I think? That'll do I suspect. He has other goals.
But "it's just a ball" to everyone but Yoshida. To him, its a milestone.
 

nighthob

Member
SoSH Member
Jul 15, 2005
12,825
Obviously he doesn’t have to give the ball back. I don’t have to like it though. I think it’s obnoxious but everybody’s MMV.
You think it’s obnoxious of a ten year old to love baseball and his home team that completely? Jaysus, even I’m not that curmudgeonly. Y’all need some youthful joy.
 

NickEsasky

Please Hammer, Don't Hurt 'Em
Silver Supporter
SoSH Member
Jul 24, 2001
9,341
You think it’s obnoxious of a ten year old to love baseball and his home team that completely? Jaysus, even I’m not that curmudgeonly. Y’all need some youthful joy.
This argument kind of rings hollow though becomes if he really loved the team completely he’d 1) probably want to give a player a milestone ball and 2) be pretty excited to get some cooler swag from the team/player
 

jon abbey

Shanghai Warrior
Moderator
SoSH Member
Jul 15, 2005
72,721
1) My money is on the kid and his family selling it to a Japanese bidder, who will certainly offer more than whatever BOS did yesterday.

2) If this is actually an issue (and it seems to come up semi-frequently), why don't MLB teams just change the rules? Balls that enter the stands are the property of whoever grabs them, unless the team wants them back, in which case they have to figure out a deal or I guess go to an arbitrator (?).
 

worm0082

Penbis
SoSH Member
Sep 19, 2002
4,586
It’s obvious the parents held out thinking this is going to turn into some big payday at auction.

I think some signed stuff / get to meet Yoshida and tickets to a future game in a luxury box (free food & drinks) would have been fair. That’s what I would have asked for anyway.

I hope they got the ball authenticated by MLB before leaving the ballpark.
 

nighthob

Member
SoSH Member
Jul 15, 2005
12,825
This argument kind of rings hollow though becomes if he really loved the team completely he’d 1) probably want to give a player a milestone ball and 2) be pretty excited to get some cooler swag from the team/player
Really? I can tell you my father would never have sold his Ted Williams home run ball no matter how much he was offered. I inherited and I can tell you that I’ve turned down huge offers because I wouldn’t trade that bit of Sox history for the world. Y’all need some youthful enthusiasm.
 

worm0082

Penbis
SoSH Member
Sep 19, 2002
4,586
Really? I can tell you my father would never have sold his Ted Williams home run ball no matter how much he was offered. I inherited and I can tell you that I’ve turned down huge offers because I wouldn’t trade that bit of Sox history for the world. Y’all need some youthful enthusiasm.
That’s really cool. Do you have any idea what home run # the ball is?
 

snowmanny

Member
SoSH Member
Dec 8, 2005
16,175
You think it’s obnoxious of a ten year old to love baseball and his home team that completely? Jaysus, even I’m not that curmudgeonly. Y’all need some youthful joy.
Sure. I don’t know the family and the child and can’t pass any bona fide judgment. In general I think these balls should go back to the player so I thought it was a bad look.
Can’t really blame the kid. I would hope that the parents encouraged him to make a trade but in the grand scheme it’s no big deal.
 

simplicio

Member
SoSH Member
Apr 11, 2012
6,445
Immaterial to the current situation (cause it's the kid's ball and whatever the family decide, they decide), but it's also not like Yoshida is some kid whose whole MLB future is uncertain either; the man's getting $18M per for the next half decade.

Which is a really weird thing to teach a kid. "Timmy, the unimaginably wealthy man wants that thing that's yours, so you have to trade it to him to maintain decorum."
 

LogansDad

Member
SoSH Member
Nov 15, 2006
30,840
Alamogordo
Immaterial to the current situation (cause it's the kid's ball and whatever the family decide, they decide), but it's also not like Yoshida is some kid whose whole MLB future is uncertain either; the man's getting $18M per for the next half decade.

Which is a really weird thing to teach a kid. "Timmy, the unimaginably wealthy man wants that thing that's yours, so you have to trade it to him to maintain decorum."
So much this.
 

Granite Sox

Member
SoSH Member
Feb 6, 2003
5,142
The Granite State
Turns out the guy who caught the ball was a Pirates fan, and he decided to hand it over to the kid to be a good guy (not realizing it was Yoshida’s first). Even the Pirates fan was trying to convince the family to give it up, since they never caught it to begin with. Verdict: dick move.
 

54thMA

Member
SoSH Member
Aug 15, 2012
10,192
Westwood MA
Turns out the guy who caught the ball was a Pirates fan, and he decided to hand it over to the kid to be a good guy (not realizing it was Yoshida’s first). Even the Pirates fan was trying to convince the family to give it up, since they never caught it to begin with. Verdict: dick move.
Thanks for the clarification; during the many shots on the broadcast of the negotiations, at one point I saw someone with Pirates gear on, was wondering what his role was.

It's a little kid, all he gives a shit about is he got a ball at a game; it's up to the parents to explain to him the significance of the ball.

I highly doubt a 10 year old understands the situation; if he wanted to keep the ball and refused whatever swag they offered him in return, then move along and forget about it.
 

nighthob

Member
SoSH Member
Jul 15, 2005
12,825
That’s really cool. Do you have any idea what home run # the ball is?
My father caught it in ‘58 during a Senators game. However his uncle had season tickets and used to take my father to 40-60 games a year, so I can’t tell you what number it is (I looked it up a number of years ago, he hit a bunch against the Senators that season). Still no way I’d ever sell the thing.
 

worm0082

Penbis
SoSH Member
Sep 19, 2002
4,586
My father caught it in ‘58 during a Senators game. However his uncle had season tickets and used to take my father to 40-60 games a year, so I can’t tell you what number it is (I looked it up a number of years ago, he hit a bunch against the Senators that season). Still no way I’d ever sell the thing.
Awesome story and a cherished possession. Thanks for sharing!

Edit- I went on the baseball reference site, it’s either #458 , 468, 469, 475, or 476.
 
Last edited:

beautokyo

New Member
Jun 5, 2008
286
Tokyo, Japan
I think everyone has their own idea as to what a fair exchange would be. Ya gotta leave the 10 year old out of it though. An adult negotiating with a child is unfair. I have some Teddy Ballgame bats still. One I sold for my sons College. Who knows what the future holds.....but I totally doubt it would come to the value of some things.
 

Sin Duda

Member
SoSH Member
Jul 16, 2005
974
(B)Austin Texas
I was no infant when I was 10. If someone from the Red Sox told me it was a special ball, I certainly had enough understanding to want to do the right thing. I would not have understood that Masa was a multimillionaire, but I would definitely have understood that an adult had asked me to give it up for something valuable. And I would have given it up. But times have changed. Maybe the parents held him back.
 

Bernard Gilkey baby

Well-Known Member
Lifetime Member
SoSH Member
Feb 26, 2002
567
I don’t think the times have changed. This is kinda flukey.

Meanwhile, how much do we love this guy already? We’re already cranky on his behalf!
 

Pitt the Elder

Member
SoSH Member
Sep 7, 2013
4,569
Personally, I think it would be pretty cool if a 10 yo wanted to keep my first home run ball. I'd ask to take a picture of him with it and give him a copy with a signed message asking him to take good care of it. Looking at that picture of the kid (or hell, just thinking about him) would be a far more satisfying way to remember my first HR than looking at the ball itself.

But hey, it's increasingly unlikely I'll ever hit my first MLB hr, so....
 

8slim

has trust issues
SoSH Member
Nov 6, 2001
26,071
Unreal America
I was thinking about this last night, totally unaware that the family didn’t give the ball away.

Good for them.

At the very least, if it were me I’d have gone home with it and done my research into the ball’s value. If the Sox wanted to match the monetary value in merch (future game tix, signed jersey, etc) then that’s a fair exchange.

If Yoshida wants it he’s also welcome to pay a fair market value. He signed a $90 million deal, I’m sure he can afford it. Or the Sox can buy it for him. They certainly have the scratch.

What I wouldn’t do is just hand the thing over for a bat and a cap.
 

Green Monster

Member
SoSH Member
Sep 29, 2000
2,278
CT
I was thinking about this last night, totally unaware that the family didn’t give the ball away.

Good for them.

At the very least, if it were me I’d have gone home with it and done my research into the ball’s value. If the Sox wanted to match the monetary value in merch (future game tix, signed jersey, etc) then that’s a fair exchange.

If Yoshida wants it he’s also welcome to pay a fair market value. He signed a $90 million deal, I’m sure he can afford it. Or the Sox can buy it for him. They certainly have the scratch.

What I wouldn’t do is just hand the thing over for a bat and a cap.
but what about a signed picture with Tessie!

I also felt like it was a very poor look for NESN when Jahmai was standing directly behind them and reporting that they were refusing to turn it over as if to publicly shame them.
 

Merkle's Boner

Member
SoSH Member
Apr 24, 2011
3,924
but what about a signed picture with Tessie!

I also felt like it was a very poor look for NESN when Jahmai was standing directly behind them and reporting that they were refusing to turn it over as if to publicly shame them.
I think he went out there planning on conducting a feel-good interview with a family who had a really cool thing happen to them, and then he found out that the family (not the kid) were being dicks about it. My guess is even then he figured that they would change their tune eventually. The age of the kid has nothing to do with it. My kids were not making a lot of major decisions when they were 10. That’s what parents are for.
 

richgedman'sghost

Well-Known Member
Lifetime Member
SoSH Member
May 13, 2006
1,925
ct
I wonder if CHB still considers Yoshida soft. Shaugnassy used that exact perogative in his Sunday column today. I could not believe a journalist would be that impatient to label a player particularly in Yoshida's case since he has so much to adjust to simply coming over to this country. Then again it's Shaughnessy so why should I be surprised?
 

Apisith

Member
SoSH Member
Oct 19, 2007
3,238
Bangkok
Max EV of 112.3mph, which is 89th percentile. The projection systems have him adding ~2.5 wins for the rest of the season. He has 0.3 wins so far on both bRef and fangraphs. Looks like a very good player for his salary.
 

SouthernBoSox

Member
SoSH Member
Jul 23, 2005
12,126
I think the approach, the ability to put bat to ball anywhere in the zone, and the power are all about what we expected post WBC. The guy can really hit and he can really hit all types of pitching.

The nice little cherry on top has been the defense, which looks more than passable, but maybe every average. His defense is a total non issue.
 

BaseballJones

ivanvamp
SoSH Member
Oct 1, 2015
25,478
Last six games: 12-24, 1 2b, 2 hr, 4 r, 9 rbi, .500/.519/.792/1.310

2-5
1-4
2-4
2-4
3-3 with a walk
2-4 with a walk

Now sports a slash line of .278/.376/.431/.807, 121 ops+

Duran, meanwhile: 12-31 with 5 2b and a homer. .387/.417/.645/1.062

Those guys have really stepped up.
 

billy ashley

Member
SoSH Member
Jul 15, 2005
1,245
Washington DC
So far it looks like the Front Office was more right about Yoshida than the industry consensus.

His baseball savant page looks very nice.

64325

Only concern is the defense. Reports were that he wasn't a strong defender. So far it looks like he's probably headed to DH after Turner's conctract is up.
 

rodderick

Member
SoSH Member
Apr 24, 2009
13,021
Belo Horizonte - Brazil
It's been amazing to watch Yoshida at the plate. He never takes a bad swing, the control of the strikezone an ability to drive the ball everywhere is as advertised. Incredibly consistent at bats.
 

Yo La Tengo

Member
SoSH Member
Nov 21, 2005
1,005
Only concern is the defense. Reports were that he wasn't a strong defender. So far it looks like he's probably headed to DH after Turner's conctract is up.
In what I've seen, he looks competent with limited range.

Looks like he has 35 put outs, one assist, and one error. Fangraphs has him at -4 defensive runs saved, so there's something going on. Looks like -1 for rARM which is how often a baserunner advances/is thrown out on a base hit and -3 for rPM which is described as Plus/Minus Runs Saved. Not sure what that means.

Fielding bible has both Yoshida and Hernandez at -4 total runs saved... Hernandez has seemed drastically worse to my eyes.
 

joe dokes

Member
SoSH Member
Jul 18, 2005
31,530
In what I've seen, he looks competent with limited range.

Looks like he has 35 put outs, one assist, and one error. Fangraphs has him at -4 defensive runs saved, so there's something going on. Looks like -1 for rARM which is how often a baserunner advances/is thrown out on a base hit and -3 for rPM which is described as Plus/Minus Runs Saved. Not sure what that means.

Fielding bible has both Yoshida and Hernandez at -4 total runs saved... Hernandez has seemed drastically worse to my eyes.
Hernandez might have adequate range, but he makes errors, which make him look worse. Yoshida isn't making the errors, but has little range, so balls just fall in. There aren't a lot of "wow, that sure looked like it was going to drop" catches from Yoshida. It certainly doesn't look as bad (except to the pitcher), as the errors at SS, but the resulting non-out is the same. Of course, if Hernandez was in CF, he'd be able to help there.
 

Al Zarilla

Member
SoSH Member
Dec 8, 2005
60,299
San Andreas Fault
I wonder if CHB still considers Yoshida soft. Shaugnassy used that exact perogative in his Sunday column today. I could not believe a journalist would be that impatient to label a player particularly in Yoshida's case since he has so much to adjust to simply coming over to this country. Then again it's Shaughnessy so why should I be surprised?
What would "soft" even mean for a baseball player? The only thing I can think of is sliding into a base (burn in hell Machado.).