Hard-throwing Tohoku high school right-hander Yu Darvish, who was named in the first round of the amateur draft by the Nippon Ham Fighters on Wednesday, was paid a courtesy call on Thursday by team general manager Shigeru Takada.
Takada visited Darvish at his school in Miyagi Prefecture to welcome the fastballer to the Pacific League team before the parties sit down to negotiate a deal for the 18-year-old.
“I got the impression that this is a good team,” said Darvish, who threw a no-hitter at the national high school invitational tournament in March and is arguably the best high-school pitcher in Japanese baseball.
Takada did not discuss any financial terms with Darvish but said the team has high expectations for him.
Elsewhere, Mitsubishi Motors Okazaki outfielder Naotaka Takehara, who was selected by the Lotte Marines in the fourth round, became the first of the bunch to sign a provisional contract for next season.
Tohoku Rakuten Golden Eagles general manager Marty Kuehnert paid a welcome visit to former Meiji University right-hander Yasuhiro Ichiba, who was selected in a pre-draft arrangement.
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