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Yu Darvish News and Notes: January 20, 2012

by on Jan.20, 2012 @ 1:31 pm, under MLB

Yu Darvish headlines from Friday, January 20, 2012...

Nikkan Sports headlines:

Darvish might help two struggling airlines, American and JAL (codeshare), that have flights between Narita Airport and Dallas/Fort-Worth International Airport.

Makes mention of articles playing off of Darvish's first name, Yu.

ESPN's "Yu Got A Deal" and "Yu Better Believe It"
Fox Sports' "All Eyes On Yu"

Recalls how Darvish initially did not want to play in the Majors, but slowly changed his mind after people around him started saying that they were interested in seeing how he would do in the US. It also helped that Nippon Ham is a team that is fairly open to players leaving.  The 2009 WBC also seems to have played a big role, since it was after that that his former teammates began to notice Darvish spending more time watching MLB games.

Notes that Darvish can earn the right to opt out of the sixth year if he wins a Cy Young and finishes in the top three or four in another of his first five seasons (or finishes in the top three or four for the Cy Young during the first five seasons).

Potential economic impact for Japan and the US, as estimated by Katsuhiro Miyamoto (economic theory), a professor from Kansai University Graduate School: 26B yen.  His breakdown:

- Estimated 10,000 people in Japan going on tours to watch Darvish pitch at about 300,000 yen per person for a total of around 3B yen.  Attendance at Rangers Ballpark could increase about 5%.
- About 1B yen in advertising.
- About 7B yen in broadcast/merchandising rights.
- The 4B yen the Fighters received for posting Darvish could end up turning into 8.2B yen if used for things in Japan.
- And the rest based on trickle down effect.

An interview with Texas Ranger Nelson Cruz.

Sponichi headlines:

Darvish's father speaks:

I am just happy that they managed to get things done, despite the complicated and difficult process. ... I would like to see the rules change to make it easier for other players. ... I have collected information from various sources and have continued to do things while thinking about my son's future. ... When [we] visited them [in early January] I felt it - the Rangers are a wonderful team.

Takara Shuzo, Hisamitsu, and Seiko have all worked with Darvish in the past.  As of now, they have no plans to work with him.  One rep is jokingly quoted as saying, "If we think about how much it might cost, re-signing him to a contract might be difficult."

Darvish currently appears in a TV commercial for one company.  Since singing with the Rangers, Darvish's management company, AVEX, has been getting a lot of calls.  At current rates, Darvish makes about 100M yen per commercial, but with all the excitement about his deal with the Rangers, that could temporarily jump to 200M yen.  A figure Ichiro has never reached.  An ad rep figures that Darvish will ultimately cost anywhere from 150M to 200M yen per commercial.

Don Nomura mentions that Darvish's mealtime meeting with Nolan Ryan may have been the deciding factor.  They went to eat at Del Frisco's -- Darvish had onion rings, lobster, and a bit steak.

The Rangers reportedly asked Darvish about the number 11 when he visited in early January.  They also visited his parents in Osaka last week.  And of the 28 games he started in 2011, the Rangers attended over 20 of them.

Mentions FoxSports' estimate of Darvish's first start (4/9 at Texas vs Seattle).

Notes a couple of titles playing on Darvish's first name:

ESPN's "Yu Better Believe it"
Fort-Worth Star Telegram's "It's Yu-phoria"

Introduces the city of Arlington, TX.

Child support payments could be around 2M yen a month (likely somewhere between 1.7 and 1.9M yen).

Quotes Darvish's high school manager, Masahiro Wako, as saying:

When he was in high school, I do not remember him being interested in going to foreign countries. ... Even if he does not make any adjustments, I think he could still win at least 15 games with 30-35 starts.

Also makes mention of the potential economic impact.

A "Darvish Stadium" in Habikino, Osaka could be in the works.

Shigetoshi Hasegawa provides his opinion on Darvish (don't have the time to translate now, perhaps later).

UPDATE @ 5:20pm - The Star-Telegram's Jeff Wilson has posted a year-by-year breakdown on Darvish's contract: six year deal worth US$60M, of which US$56M is guaranteed; 5.5M in 2012, 9.5M in 2013, $10M in 2014-2016, and $11M in 2017.

UPDATE @ 8:34pm - Darvish left for the US, with his father, out of Narita Airport today.  About 200 fans showed up for a chance to see him.

See also:

Texas Rangers sign Yu Darvish to six-year deal