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Yu Darvish News and Notes: January 21, 2012

by on Jan.21, 2012 @ 1:35 pm, under MLB

Yu Darvish was greeted by about 200 fans at Dallas/Fort-Worth International Airport on Friday.  His press conference at Rangers Ballpark at 7pm CST (1/20) attracted eight TV cameras and around 200 reporters from the US and Japan.  The Star-Telegram's Jeff Wilson has posted a video from the press conference.

Darvish did not speak any English during the press conference.  When asked by a reporter if he knew any English, he replied, "I can understand it fine, but in speaking I have a hard time coming up with the words.  I think I will be able to speak in one to two months."

Other miscellaneous questions:

What do you think of when you think of Texas?

Boots.

Is 400-game winner Masaichi Kaneda still alive?

He is very healthy.

On pitching on fewer days of rest...

During the last half of the 2011 season, I had a few starts where I pitched on five days of rest.  And I was able to throw about 120 pitches on five days of rest.  I do not think I will have any problems.

On pitching outdoors...

It seems like people see me as pitching well indoors, but over the last three years, I liked pitching outdoors more.  I find it easier pitching outdoors.

Nikkan Sports is carrying the following comments from the press conference:

What pushed you to sign with the Rangers?

I came here at the start of January and had a chance to meet the GM and other members of the organization.  They all treated me like family and that was a big deal for me.

All eyes will be on you.

I am still that baseball loving kid that was born and raised in Habikino, Osaka.  I still feel a little surprised at all the attention.

What about the differences in the environment?

I think I will be able to handle the differences in the ball.  I am a little concerned about the size of the stadium.  I asked them in January if they could push make the bullpens out in right-center a little smaller and push the fences back, but I do not know if they will do it.

Did you get any advice from other players like Ichiro?

No, but I do think I have to try to become an American.  I have to be careful about becoming sensitive about my private life, like I was in Japan.

What would you like to accomplish?

My fastball really is not as fast as everyone thinks.  But I do have a number of off-speed pitches so I think I will alright.

What about the pressure and your goals?

All I can do is do my best.  The most important thing is staying healthy and playing out a full season.  Regarding the pressure, maybe it has something to do with not being very bright, but I think I can enjoy myself without worrying about it.

What about concerns and things you look forward to?

I do not have any concerns.  And I look forward to playing with great hitters and pitchers.

On the number eleven.

I wore the number for seven years.  I am not that attached to it, but the team gave it to me.

UPDATE @ 5:16pm - Darvish will be holding his press conference in Japan on January 24 at Sapporo Dome.  At his request, a stage will be set next to the mound and the seats on the third base side will be opened to fans for free.

See also:

Yu Darvish News and Notes: January 20, 2012

Texas Rangers sign Yu Darvish to six-year deal