Sunday, March 26, 2017

Card Of The Week March 26

I mentioned earlier that Kodai Senga was named to the All-World Baseball Classic team.  Senga was tied with teammate Tomoyuki Sugano for the most strikeouts in the WBC with 16.  He only gave up one run in 11 innings spread over four outings - unfortunately that run was the game winner for the US in last Tuesday night's game.  His 0.82 ERA was second only to Josh Zeid of Israel's 0.00 ERA for pitchers who had more than 10 innings pitched.  It's not too much of a surprise that he had a good WBC as he was excellent for the Hawks last season - going 12-3 with a 2.61 ERA and 181 strikeouts in 169 innings.

I was surprised to discover when I went looking for Senga cards that he had originally been drafted as an ikusei player for the Hawks out of Gamagori High School in the fall 2010 draft.  He was registered to the Hawks 70 man roster in 2012 and made his NPB ichi-gun debut on April 30th that year.  So his first card was from the 2011 BBM Rookie Edition set but since ikusei players aren't included in the flagship set his first BBM flagship card wasn't until the 2nd Version set in 2012 (in the 1st Version Update subset):

2011 BBM Rookie Edition #009

2012 BBM 2nd Version #407
Senga's not the first or the last player to make it in NPB via this route but it is somewhat unusual.

Speaking of the WBC, I just wanted to mention a couple of things about my trip to Los Angeles last week to see the final round.  I was going to do a post about it but I decided I didn't really have a post's worth of stuff to say and I didn't get any particularly interesting photos.  I had a great time - Monday and Tuesday night's games were very exciting, even if neither had the outcome I was hoping for and Wednesday night was a bit of a blowout but it ended with the team I was pulling for winning and there was the excitement of a no-hitter until the seventh.  I got to hang out with Deanna and Dani,  met up with the guys from Graveyard Ball and even briefly met Jason Coskrey of the Japan Times (who's a friend of Deanna's).  It was a lot of fun and hopefully I'll do it again in 2021.

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