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Shohei Otani could decide where he wants to play as early as next week

by on Oct.12, 2012 @ 12:27 pm, under High School

Shohei Otani, his parents, and Hanamaki Higashi manager Hiroshi Sasaki meeting with the Boston Red Sox started at 6pm and lasted about an hour and a half.  He is expected to sit down with his family his family sometime this week and could come to a final decision some time early next week.

Some quotes from Otani:

Sports Hochi

My concerns were resolved.

My parents were worried about areas outside of baseball.  I am glad I was able to ask.

MLB teams see player development over the long-term.  Practices at the minor league level are important.  That is something the manager and I both agree with.

I cannot make this decision based just on my feelings of wanting to go.  But I think I have to make the final decision.


I was able to hear again just how great the environment is.  I had worries in areas outside of baseball, like the language barrier, but those have been addressed.  I was able to see the good in both and I am not sure [which I want to pick].

I think where I want to play is important. ... There is the relationship between Japan and the Majors, I also have to think about things like that.


 I was able to ask about things outside of baseball, like language and food.  My worries and my family's worries were addressed.  I also heard about how in order to play for a long time, you need to think in the long-term and that involves going through the minor league system.

I cannot make this decision based on my own feelings alone.  I am at fifty-fifty.  I want to discuss this with my family, the manager, and others around me and make a decision as soon as possible since this can affect the draft and I do not want to create any problems for NPB teams.

Daily Sports

Players I want to strive to become have also [gone to the Majors].  I now feel like I want to play in that kind of environment.

Other notes:

  • There was talk about a personal interpreter, but the Boston scout told Otani that learning English was also part of turning pro.  He was reportedly satisfied with the answer.
  • The Red Sox were represented by Eddie Romero (Director of International Scouting) and Jon Deeble (Scouting Coordinator for the Pacific Rim).
  • The Los Angeles Dodgers are considered the front-runners.

Source: Sports Hochi 10/12/2012, Sponichi 10/12/2012, Sanspo 10/12/2012, Daily Sports 10/12/2012