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[12/19/2013] Rakuten offense takes hit, Casey McGehee signs one-year deal with Miami Marlins

by on Dec.19, 2013 @ 1:23 pm, under MLB, NPB

The Rakuten Eagles offense took a hit today with word that Casey McGehee signed a one-year deal with the Miami Marlins.

From MLB.com's Joey Nowak:

... The 31-year-old infielder spent the 2013 season with the Rakuten Golden Eagles, and he helped lead the club to the Japan Series Championship in its ninth season. McGehee appeared in all 144 regular-season games -- he surmised 125-130 of them were at third base -- batting .292 with 28 home runs, 30 doubles and 93 RBIs. In 11 postseason games, he hit .289 with a home run and two RBIs.

"The whole time that I was going through this process, I think in the back of my mind I was really hoping to get a chance back in the big leagues," McGehee said on Wednesday. "I wasn't going to take just any situation; I had to feel like it was going to be a good fit for myself and for the organization as well. The situation I found myself in, I couldn't have asked for a better one."

... "Even before he went to Japan, the feedback we had gotten is just a tremendous teammate and a leader of men on clubs," said Marlins president of baseball operations Michael Hill. "Wherever he's been, he's been respected, and we felt like bringing that type of person and player on our club ... is just consistent with what we've been trying to do this offseason in trying to upgrade our talent on the field."

Source: MLB.com 12/18/2013

And from Santa Cruz Sentinel's Jim Seimas:

... McGehee - a 31-year-old third baseman out of Soquel High who has played five seasons in the majors - agreed to join the Miami Marlins on Wednesday after passing his physical a day earlier. His one-year deal is worth a base $1.1 million, plus $400,000 in incentives.

... "I was able to speak with the team in Japan last night," McGehee said. "That was the hard part for me because I really did enjoy my time there, I'm going to miss it. ... But when I signed with them, the best-case scenario was I have a good year and come back. So I couldn't be more happy."

Source: Santa Cruz Sentinel 12/18/2013

On a side note: as a Rakuten fan, it is sad to see him leave, but I wish him the best of luck with his new team.

5 comments on “[12/19/2013] Rakuten offense takes hit, Casey McGehee signs one-year deal with Miami Marlins

  1. muratafan

    Dreadful news for Rakuten fans like myself. Softbank got a WHOLE lot better in the off-season, Seibu took a bit of a hit losing Wakui and Kataoka, Chiba got better with Wakui, Orix took a hit by losing Dae Ho Lee, Nippon Ham pretty lost a bit with losing keppel/wolfe/tsuruoka.

    Rakuten FINALLY had some luck with the suketto market w/McGehee and Jones after several disastrous signings such as Todd Linden, Rasner (who was only really good at closing), Rick Short (average, few RBI’s, little power) and others. They finally got some desperately needed power and now half of it’s gone.

    Personally, if I am Tanaka-san, I would be REALLY desperate to leave. The Eagles owners did not do much of ANYTHING this off-season other than to complain about the posting system. They let several free agents get scooped up by Softbank and now the team is taking a big step back.

    Maybe Taishi Nakagawa is up to the challenge, but other than that, the Eagles offense is going to take a dramatic hit. The Eagles hit 92 home runs last year and 28 of them were by McGehee. In fact, over half of the Eagles home runs came from McGehee or Jones (28 and 26). Those two accounted for almost 60% of the the Eagles’ home runs.

    Not good, not good at all.

  2. muratafan

    One other thing: I am pretty certain his family situation had a big part in his decision. The money is pretty much a wash AND it appears that Rakuten was going to give McGehee two years, not one. The money was actually better from NPB AND the team situation MUCH better. The Florida Marlins are AWFUL and horribly run and their stadium is a mortuary of empty seats.

  3. Steve Novosel

    There’s not much to do in Sendai for a guy not specifically interested in things Japanese – I imagine that’s a big reason he left.

    Rakuten could be pretty awful even with Tanaka next year – they could be at the bottom without him and McGehee.

    Only Chiba (yay!) and the Hawks have done anything at all to improve themselves this offseason. Everybody else has gotten markedly worse.

  4. Alex

    I hope he’s ready for the culture shock of going from a professional, championship team with a strong fanbase to the joke that is the Marlins.

  5. IM

    He’s back in the bigs and should have a very good shot to be the everyday third baseman. I would think he’d be very happy, and good for him. He seemed to be a good teammate and even a team leader last year. He also seemed to have better chemistry with the Japanese players than most foreign players, probably the winning helps, but anyways I hope he has a good season. If he does he may get a better contract with a better team the next year or get traded to a contender mid-season. No reason he can’t do well, he was a pretty good player his first couple years in the majors.

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