Saturday, November 15, 2008

Darrell Rasner Joins the Foreign Legion

A common spring training hazing ritual is to tell a marginal guy that he just got traded to Japan. Guess what, Darrell Rasner, it ain't spring:
Right-handed pitcher Darrell Rasner, who started 20 games for the New York Yankees last season, has been sold to a team in Japan for $1 million, his agent said.

Rasner, 27, expects to sign a two-year deal with the Tohoku Rakuten Golden Eagles of the Pacific League, agent Matt Sosnick said.

To be fair, this appears to have been engineered by Rasner and his agent, not the Yankees. I just never have gotten my mind around the idea of a dude's rights being sold to Japan. I know it happens, but it just seems weird.


tHeMARksMiTh said...

Reminds me of the Kyle Kendrick prank.

tHeMARksMiTh said...

Also, Legion* :)

Pete Toms said...

It's never struck me as kosher either.

I was reminded of Millar. Didn't he fanagle ( sic? ) his way out of going? Didn't the Marlins sell him to a Japanese club and somehow he ended up in Boston? IIRC did it have something to do with 9/11 or am I too tired?

Bob Timmermann said...

Why does it not seem odd though if a Japanese player wants to come play in MLB? It's really the same thing. Or a player going to play in Mexico.

Millar was going to go to Japan to play for Chunichi prior to the 2003 season, but backed out of the deal citing how the war in Iraq made it more important for him to stay close to home.

That, and the Red Sox, offered him a contract too.

In the end, Alex Ochoa took Millar's place.

Craig Calcaterra said...

I don't think it's odd that a player wants to play there. I think it's odd that it can be done in something other than a free agent context. I mean, here I realize Rasner wants to go there, but the notion that a team can basically trade a player to Japan (or something close to it) is something different.

Brad said...

Craig, your rights have been sold to Geocities. Please report to 1996.

Craig Calcaterra said...

Brad -- I don't think anyone would notice the difference. This ain't exactly high tech. And to be honest, there were probably some Geocities sites with greater popularity.

Bob Timmermann said...

I assume Rasner was out of options. So he could have risked getting bumped off the 40-man roster and DFA'd and spending a delightful year in Scranton-Wilkes Barre or he could go to Japan for a couple of years and get a lot more money.

Rasner is the typical American pitcher who heads across the Pacific. For the most part, they don't throw hard.

Of course, Rasner will find out that he's going to be living in Senadi, which isn't exactly the most exciting city in Japan. But he will get to play in Kleenex Stadium.

Jason @ IIATMS said...

FWIW, I got an email from the agent and he said it was strictly a monetary decision.