LOS ANGELES – Former Chiba Lotte Marines hurler Yuhei Nakaushiro has been invited to attend major league spring training, the Arizona Diamondbacks announced Monday.
The 27-year-old lefty joined the National League club on a minor league contract and finished last season with the Triple-A Reno Aces, where he allowed no runs in 13 games.
In 29-1/3 innings with four different teams in 2016, Nakaushiro struck out 40 batters, while allowing 21 hits and issuing 13 walks.
“I want to make the most of this chance,” said Nakaushiro, who remains on a minor league deal. “It’s not an easy wall to overcome, but I believe in myself and want to make a good impression.”
If he makes it to the majors, it will mark the 23rd consecutive season in which a Japanese player makes his major league debut.
Nakaushiro was the Marines’ second draft pick out of Kinki University in 2011. But after appearing in 27 games as a rookie, he pitched just 10 more times with the first team and was released after the 2015 season.