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Softbank Hawks to part ways with Brad Penny

by on May.08, 2012 @ 7:55 pm, under NPB

The Softbank Hawks announced today that they are parting ways with thirty-three-year-old Brad Penny.

Penny made his NPB debut on April 4 against the Rakuten Eagles and was taken off the active roster the following day on April 5 with right shoulder pain.  Penny was examined at two different hospitals in two different countries (first Japan then the US) before returning to Japan and resuming his rehab/training at the Saitozaki facilities on April 20.

Earlier reports indicated that the Hawks did not plan on activating Penny until he was fully healthy.  There were also concerns about his training program -- the team reportedly gave him free reign to do what he felt was necessary, but the injury raised eyebrows.

Brad Penny leaves the Softbank Hawks after throwing just sixty-four pitches.

UPDATE 5/9 @ 12:03am - A couple of reports, including Asahi Shimbun and Sanspo (the same one Carter linked to down below) mention that Penny strongly asked for his release because he was having a hard time adjusting to both life in Japan and baseball in Japan.

Nikkan Sports also quotes manager Koji Akiyama as saying, "Penny...  It is unfortunate.  But part of it is his feelings and then there is also his shoulder.  It can not be helped."

UPDATE 5/9 @ 2:56pm - Sports Hochi Osaka and Sports Hochi note that the Hawks owe Penny about US$1M (~80M yen) for the three months he was with the team. Sponichi (as mentioned by fighting ham down below) figures the Hawks owe about 70M yen.

10 comments on “Softbank Hawks to part ways with Brad Penny

  1. Mike DeJong

    Wow. Japanese teams have no patience with foreign players, do they? Contrast that with Wada and the Orioles. He has yet to throw a pitch for them yet they’re sticking with him.

    1. Steve Novosel

      I don’t think you know anything about this, Mike DeJong. Shocking, I know.

  2. Alex

    Penny was a horrible mistake from the get-go. The team really should’ve used on the money on re-signing Houlton.

    On the plus side, the Pena signing was been excellent.

    1. Steve Novosel

      This. THIS. Stupid to sign Penny when you already have a great starter who wants to be in Japan.

    2. Carter

      Well I don’t think letting Houlton walk is a big mistake, their farm team is deep, overpaying for another foreign starter certainly was. Or at least get a guy like Bullington or Matthieson, eager to prove himself at the best level after having been relegated to the minors.

    3. Steve Novosel

      Farm team is one thing – but there is a difference between having a pitcher who is solid in the Western League and one who is proven effective at ichi-gun.

  3. blacklabel

    Damn thats not a bad payday for one start where he gave up 6 earned runs. His actions have probably ruined it for the next round of guys who want to come play in Japan though.

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