Baseball has been widely popular in Japan for over a century, and it has produced some of the most talented players in the world. One of the most promising young players to come out of Japan in recent years is Kodai Senga. Senga is a right-handed pitcher who has made a name for himself in Japanese baseball and is now gaining recognition in the United States as well.
Early Life and Career
Kodai Senga was born on January 30, 1993, in Yokosuka, Kanagawa, Japan. He started playing baseball at a young age and was a standout player in high school. He was selected by the Softbank Hawks in the second round of the 2011 Nippon Professional Baseball (NPB) draft and made his debut for the team in 2012.
Senga struggled in his first few seasons with the Hawks, but he started to show his potential in 2016 when he posted a 2.79 ERA and struck out 132 batters in 127 innings. He continued to improve in 2017 and 2018, becoming one of the most dominant pitchers in Japanese baseball. In 2018, he won the Sawamura Award, which is given to the best pitcher in NPB each season.
Senga is known for his electric fastball, which can reach speeds of up to 100 mph. He also has a devastating slider and a changeup that he uses to keep hitters off balance. His pitching motion is unorthodox, with a high leg kick and a long stride, which allows him to generate a lot of power and deception.
Despite his impressive stuff, Senga has struggled with control at times, walking more batters than he would like. However, he has made strides in improving his command and has become a more complete pitcher as a result.
Senga’s success in Japan has not gone unnoticed by Major League Baseball (MLB) teams. He was posted by the Softbank Hawks in December 2020, making him available to be signed by any MLB team that was willing to pay a posting fee.
Several teams expressed interest in Senga, but he ultimately decided to return to the Softbank Hawks for the 2021 season. However, there is still a lot of speculation about whether he will make the jump to the MLB in the future.
Kodai Senga is one of the most exciting young pitchers in baseball today. His combination of electric stuff and unorthodox pitching motion make him a unique and fascinating player to watch. Whether he decides to stay in Japan or make the jump to the MLB, there is no doubt that he will continue to be a dominant force on the mound for years to come.
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