Houlton joins Giants


The Yomiuri Giants said Friday they have acquired right-hander D.J. Houlton, a member of the 2011 Japan Series-winning Fukuoka Softbank Hawks, on a two-year, $5 million contract.

Yomiuri also offered free agent left-hander Toshiya Sugiuchi, who also pitched for Softbank this past season, the jersey number of 18 — given traditionally to ace pitchers.

Houlton went 19-6 with a 2.19 ERA in 26 starts in 2011, tying Sawamura Award winner Masahiro Tanaka of the Tohoku Rakuten Golden Eagles for the Japanese baseball lead in wins.