Adjust Font Size: A A       Guest settings   Register

Johjima

Discussion in the Rumor Mill forum
Johjima
I heard a rumor he may be going to the majors? Is he eligable, and is there anything to this?
Comments
Re: Johjima
[ Author: Guest: John Brooks | Posted: Aug 10, 2005 10:00 AM ]

Johjima said he would decide after the season whether he would go to the majors or stay with the Softbank Hawks.

He's eligible for free agency after this year. Free agency talks may being after the Nippon Series, if I'm not mistaken.
Re: Johjima
[ Author: Guest: Xysma | Posted: Aug 11, 2005 10:43 AM ]

Kenji Johjima will probably sign with the Seattle Mariners. The Mariners' catchers the last two years have been a total dearth of talent. Furthermore, the M's can offer Johjima a three year contract in order to allow top pick Jeff Clement to fully develop. It is a win-win situation for both parties.
Re: Johjima
[ Author: Guest: Xysma | Posted: Aug 21, 2005 11:36 AM ]

The Mariners' interest in Johjima is now rather minuscule since they have named Yorvit Torealba the 2006 starting catcher.
Re: Johjima
[ Author: Guest: Xysma | Posted: Aug 27, 2005 9:50 AM ]

From The Sporting News, Ken Rosenthal's "Inside Dish" article:
Kenji Jojima, 29, could become the first Japanese catcher to play in the majors next season. The language barrier would be significant but not insurmountable; several major league catchers from Latin American countries have had to learn English as their second language. The Mariners, Mets and Dodgers could have interest in Jojima, a free agent who might be the best righthanded hitter in Japan.


[Editor: Is this paper edition or is there a link?]
Re: Johjima
[ Author: Guest | Posted: Sep 27, 2005 8:58 AM ]

Any word on how Johjima's injury could impact his move to MLB next year? How serious/long term is his injury?
Re: Johjima
[ Author: Guest: John Brooks | Posted: Sep 27, 2005 2:30 PM ]

Johjima suffered a broken shin bone, and is expected to be out for the rest of the season. [Full Story - Japan Ball]
Re: Johjima
[ Author: Guest: Xysma | Posted: Oct 31, 2005 7:49 PM ]

Hello Seattle. [Johjima declares free agency - Japan Today]
Re: Johjima
[ Author: Guest: Ed Kranepool | Posted: Nov 1, 2005 9:48 AM ]

He may get strong interest and big money. The pool of good hitting catchers is small.
Re: Johjima
[ Author: Guest: Xysma | Posted: Nov 1, 2005 8:09 PM ]

The M's plan to set up a meeting with Johjima [Link - Seattle PI].

With Yorvit Torrealba the only catcher on the roster, and top prospect Jeff Clement at least two years away from starting, expect the M's to offer Johjima a three year deal. The Mets are interested, but I, as well as a majority of sports writers, believe that New York will splurge on Ramon Hernandez.
Re: Johjima
[ Author: Guest: Xysma | Posted: Nov 2, 2005 1:17 PM ]

Here is another article describing Seattle's interest in Johjima. References to Hirotoshi Ishii and Kei Igawa are located in the article as well. Link - The News Tribune]
Re: Johjima
[ Author: Guest: Ed Kranepool | Posted: Nov 4, 2005 9:08 AM ]

There was a report in one of the papers a few weeks back quoting an un-named Mets source that they would not go after Johjima because of his lack of English skills. Management feels some English is a necessity in that position.

I don't necessarily agree, though an interpreter out on the mound would be odd, if not contrary to MLB rules. I'm sure Johjima will find strong interest elsewhere, nevertheless.
Re: Johjima
[ Author: locked_up | Posted: Nov 6, 2005 4:42 AM | SL Fan ]

Kenji doesn't speak any English or does speak some English?
Re: Johjima
[ Author: Guest: Ed Kranepool | Posted: Nov 7, 2005 1:51 AM ]

I'm not really sure, but I suspect just about no English. A few of the Latin American catchers had limited English when they came up, but figured out enough phrases and hand signals to handle the communication needs.

New York Newsday (Heyman) ran a story contradicting earlier reports that the Mets are scouting Johjima heavily this year and may make a run for him. Cited as Omar Minaya's out of the box thinking. Whatever. Johjima can play.
Re: Johjima
[ Author: Guest: Ed Kranepool | Posted: Nov 11, 2005 10:13 AM ]

Actually, I read yesterday in one of the New York papers that Johjima has been taking English lessons for a year. He has a city tour planned and the Mets are reportedly interested. I'd be fine with that.

On another subject, Godzilla isn't taking any of Steinbrenner's bull. George seems a bit reluctant to give Godzilla what he's worth. Matsui wants to be appreciated and get a Drew-like deal 5 years, 50+ million. George wants to give him 3 years. George may very well blow this one and lose the classiest Yank he has.
Re: Johjima
[ Author: Guest: Xysma | Posted: Nov 11, 2005 9:43 PM ]

Kenji Johjima would prefer to play for the Mariners [Link - Seattle PI].

Don't be fooled by Bill Bavasi's remark. The M's most certainly need a catcher because of the current roster. The twenty-two year old Rene Rivera is too inexperienced to be an everyday catcher, and Yorvit Torrealba, with his good defense yet awful offensive skills, is better suited as a backup. Johjima would be the perfect bridge for top prospect Jeff Clement, who about two to three years away from professional baseball. The M's will probably offer Johjima a contract slightly better than the one Tadahito Iguchi signed last year.
Re: Johjima
[ Author: Guest: Xysma | Posted: Nov 12, 2005 11:42 AM ]

Kenji Johjima is on the verge of signing a two year contract worth about $8 million with the Seattle Mariners. Johjima wanted a guaranteed third year but the Mariners insisted that the third year be an option. [Full Story - The News Tribune]
Re: Johjima
[ Author: Guest: samuraifiction | Posted: Nov 13, 2005 12:30 AM ]

I found this article on the Los Angeles Dodgers' MLB website.
Re: Johjima
[ Author: Guest: Gary Garland | Posted: Nov 16, 2005 6:16 AM ]

Johjima looks like he is pretty much going to throw in his lot with Seattle. I'm very suprised at the money that is being talked about (I figured it would be in the $2-3 million range in salary plus heavy incentives).

On the language issue, both Atlanta scout Phil Dale as well as Mariners skipper Mike Hargrove indicated that the language issue may be overrated. I agree.

Certainly, it is going to take some time for Johjima to learn the hitters and he will be catching many more two seam heaters than he ever saw in Japan, but as long as he hits, he will be okay. The fact that he doesn't strike out much makes me believe that he will be better than Iguchi was this past year.
Re: Johjima
[ Author: himself | Posted: Nov 17, 2005 4:06 AM | FSH Fan ]

He's only met with the Mariners as of now, but at least two teams (Mets and Padres) are showing interest as well. For now, it's apparent that he's leaning toward the Mariners.
Re: Johjima
[ Author: Guest: John Brooks | Posted: Nov 18, 2005 2:08 AM ]

Johjima canceled his meeting with the Mets and is preparing to end his U.S. trip soon to return to Japan to consult with family and parents. [Full Story - Japan Ball]
Re: Johjima
[ Author: Something Lions | Posted: Nov 18, 2005 10:31 AM | SL Fan ]

So, he's not visiting the Mets becaues they didn't make an official offer? I can sort of understand that. Though playing potential suitors off of each other seems to be the common thing to do for free agents.
Re: Johjima
[ Author: Something Lions | Posted: Nov 18, 2005 4:36 PM | SL Fan ]

Diametrically opposed reaction to Johjima between Mariners' and Mets' fans is hilarious. [USS Mariner vs. Mets Geek]

One club had mostly only good experiences with Japanese players, the other had mostly average to poor experiences with Japanese players. But the sample sizes are too small to be any kind of an indicator! Ah, emotional fans.
Re: Johjima
[ Author: Guest: John Brooks | Posted: Nov 19, 2005 12:25 AM ]

According to Newsday, the Mets were turned off by Johjima's limited English. Though as Mike Hargrove and Braves' scout Phil Dale said, the language issue may be overated, and personally I think it is.

Newsday said the Mets prefer to go after Bengie Molina or the injury-prone Ramon Hernandez. [Link]

All in all, in my opinion it looks like Johjima will sign with the Mariners.
Re: Johjima
[ Author: Guest: Ed Kranepool | Posted: Nov 28, 2005 3:40 PM ]

I think they wanted to meet Jojima before making an offer, to see if he was serious about New York, not using them to get a better offer from Seattle and to get an understanding of him. They have done that with every FA they are going after this year.

All this is moot because he wanted to play in Seattle all along. It will be interesting to see how he does. He should be AOK.
Re: Johjima
[ Author: Guest: Ed Kranepool | Posted: Nov 19, 2005 4:00 AM ]

Considering he was offered almost half the money he made in Japan, it seems like resigning with Softbank is a no brainer.

Johjima's flakiness in cancelling his tour isn't going to help Japanese players who want to follow him. At least he didn't pull a Nakamura.
Re: Johjima
[ Author: Guest: Xysma | Posted: Nov 19, 2005 11:18 PM ]

The Mariners have increased their offer to Johjima for two years, approximately a total of $12 million, and with a club option for a third. Johjima will make his decision Tuesday at Softbank's annual last team meeting. [Full Story - Seattle Times]

Also, I read that Oh left Johjima off the WBC roster since Johjima will be preparing to play for the Mariners. Does anyone know if this rumor holds any validity?
Re: Johjima
[ Author: Guest: Xysma | Posted: Nov 20, 2005 12:19 AM ]

This is the article [SpoNichi - in Japanese] that says that Jojhjima is no longer on the WBC roster.
Re: Johjima
[ Author: Guest: Xysma | Posted: Nov 21, 2005 6:53 PM ]

The M's will announce the signing of catcher Kenji Johjima this week. [Link - Seattle Times]
Re: Johjima
[ Author: Guest: WOW | Posted: Nov 22, 2005 5:34 AM ]

Johjima signed with the Mariners, 3 years $16.5 million.
Re: Johjima
[ Author: Guest: Xysma | Posted: Nov 22, 2005 8:31 AM ]

What can we expect from Kenji Johjima?

Would this be too hopeful:

Avg: 274
HR: 14
RBI: 68
SB: 4
OBP: 353
Re: Johjima
[ Author: BigManZam | Posted: Nov 22, 2005 9:08 AM | CLM Fan ]

I don't think it's too hopeful. I wouldn't be surprised if he really shows something. We don't have enough Japanese star batters to know exactly what will happen. Johjima is the kind of guy who could surprise us and just tee off on MLB pitching. What I'm really interested in is his defense and ability to call games against MLB teams. It should be fun to follow the Mariners in 2006. I'm definitely going to watch more games than I did in 2005.
Re: Johjima
[ Author: Something Lions | Posted: Nov 22, 2005 10:25 AM | SL Fan ]

Interesting Jojima projection at USS Mariner: Link.

Even with a significant hit to his average, walks, and power numbers, the Mariners are still looking at quite an improvement from their 2005 catchers.
Re: Johjima
[ Author: Guest: null | Posted: Nov 22, 2005 11:00 AM ]

One of the Mariners blogs has been trying to guess exactly that.
[link - Lookout Landing]

I said .287/.355/.445, 13 HR, 65 RBI, 30 BB, 65 K. I think Safeco as a park will hurt his power, but hopefully not too badly.
Re: Johjima
[ Author: 20X6!! | Posted: Nov 24, 2005 4:08 AM | FSH Fan ]

I'd think the park factor wouldn't be an issue with Johjima's power numbers, because the Fukuoka Dome is about the same size (from left right 100m, 118m, 122m, 118m, 100m with a 5.8m wall) as Safeco (101m, 119, 123m, 117m, 99m with a 2.4m wall).

This is, of course, assuming the same ball (which is another discussion entirely).
Re: Johjima
[ Author: Guest: Jim Albright | Posted: Nov 22, 2005 11:06 AM ]

Overall, I'd say that probably isn't too hopeful. Look at the major league equivalents of the past three years here [Baseball Guru].

Jim Albright
Re: Johjima
[ Author: Guest | Posted: Nov 22, 2005 4:16 PM ]

For $5.5 million a year, I hope he puts up better #'s than that.
Re: Johjima
[ Author: 1908 | Posted: Nov 23, 2005 2:29 PM | HT Fan ]

- For $5.5 million a year, I hope he puts up better #'s than that.

An 808 OPS out of a catcher is solid, and his 2003 and 2004 equivalent numbers are outstanding - they would be worth a lot more than $5.5M.
Re: Johjima
[ Author: Guest: sakic | Posted: Nov 24, 2005 9:43 AM ]

Not sure if he will have the power numbers that everyone envisions him having. Signed and sealed with Mariners.
Re: Johjima
[ Author: Guest: Bob Timmermann | Posted: Nov 26, 2005 7:44 AM ]

I would just be satisfied if people could settle on the spelling of his name. The English language papers in Japan are still using "Jojima," but the Mariners are using "Johjima."
Re: Johjima
[ Author: Deanna | Posted: Nov 26, 2005 6:57 PM | NIP Fan ]

I believe people are using "Johjima" because that's what was on his uniform in Japan; that's how I spell it and the reasoning, at least. I assume that's how it'll be spelled on his Mariners uniform.

20X6 - there are other factors to Safeco which make it friendlier to lefty hitters than righty hitters, though. For example, there's a scoreboard over the wall in left field which makes it over twice as high for a section or two, so hits that would be easy homers over the wall in right field just bounce off the scoreboard for ground rule doubles in left field. The airflow of the stadium also supposedly has some effect on balls hit towards left as well (it's the side that isn't enclosed quite the same as the other three sides of the stadium), though I don't remember where I read that.
Re: Johjima
[ Author: Guest: Bob Timmermann | Posted: Nov 27, 2005 5:03 AM ]

- I believe people are using "Johjima" because that's what was on his uniform in Japan; that's how I spell it and the reasoning, at least. I assume that's how it'll be spelled on his Mariners uniform."

However, in Japan, the current Padres' reliever uniform read "Ohtsuka" but in San Diego the uniform is "Otsuka," and pretty much all the American announcers have gotten the pronunciation close to being correct as a native English speaker can get with a Japanese name.
Re: Johjima
[ Author: mijow | Posted: Nov 28, 2005 7:46 PM | HT Fan ]

And there's another one: "Shinjyo" changed to "Shinjo" when this former Hanshin player moved to the majors.
Re: Johjima
[ Author: Deanna | Posted: Nov 29, 2005 4:26 PM | NIP Fan ]

On the official Mariners' site, he's listed as "Kenji Johjima" on the 40-man roster, though.
About

This is a site about Pro Yakyu (Japanese Baseball), not about who the next player to go over to MLB is. It's a community of Pro Yakyu fans who have come together to share their knowledge and opinions with the world. It's a place to follow teams and individuals playing baseball in Japan (and Asia), and to learn about Japanese (and Asian) culture through baseball.

It is my sincere hope that once you learn a bit about what we're about here that you will join the community of contributors.

Michael Westbay
(aka westbaystars)
Founder

Search for Pro Yakyu news and information
Copyright (c) 1995-2018 JapaneseBaseball.com.
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons License.
Some rights reserved.