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Brad Penny officially signs with Japan’s Softbank Hawks

Feb 5, 2012, 8:55 AM EDT

penny pose getty Getty Images

According to the Associated Press, via the San Diego Union-Tribune, the Softbank Hawks of Nippon Professional Baseball announced Sunday on their team website that veteran right-hander Brad Penny has officially agreed to a contract for 2012.

Terms of the deal have not been released. Penny is expected to travel to Japan on Wednesday.

The 33-year-old struggled to find much free agent interest from major league teams this winter after registering a rough 5.30 ERA, 1.56 WHIP and 74/62 K/BB ratio across 181 2/3 innings last season for the Tigers. Once regarded as a dangerous power pitcher, his fastball averaged a nine-year low 92.6 mph in 2011. The pitch averaged 94.1 mph in 2010, when Penny posted a 3.23 ERA and 35/9 K/BB ratio in 55 2/3 frames for the Cardinals before experiencing back problems.

UPDATE, 1:59 PM: According to FOX Sports’ Ken Rosenthal, Penny’s contract is worth $4 million. It also carries $3.5 million worth of incentives and a $4.5 million mutual option for 2013.

  1. proudlycanadian - Feb 5, 2012 at 9:21 AM

    I wish him a good year, good health and a good salary.

    Good morning Drew. Who drew the short end of the stick and has to “work” during the Super Bowl?

    • Drew Silva - Feb 5, 2012 at 9:26 AM

      What is this “Super Bowl” you speak of? A new KFC creation?

      • proudlycanadian - Feb 5, 2012 at 9:50 AM

        It is an excuse to eat Buffalo Wings, drink beer and watch commercials especially the Victoria’s Secret commercial.

      • Old Gator - Feb 5, 2012 at 11:17 AM

        The Victoria’s Secret™ catalogue is a great way to study the mysteries of zero as a mathematical problem. You just count the nipples.

    • proudlycanadian - Feb 5, 2012 at 3:12 PM

      It appears that he got $4 million with an additional $3.5 million in incentives. There is also a mutual option for next year. If he pitches well this year, he might just want to stay in Japan.

  2. dondada10 - Feb 5, 2012 at 10:01 AM

    I read the headline quickly and thought it said “Japan’s SoftBALL Hawks.” Then I laughed out loud.

  3. cur68 - Feb 5, 2012 at 11:17 AM

    Dang. I was hoping he’d be Ham Fighting.

    • Old Gator - Feb 5, 2012 at 11:30 AM

      Wait until he discovers the teppanyaki yatai along the Nakatagawa in the Nakasu district. He’s gonna look like Prince Fielder by the time the season is over.

      • Old Gator - Feb 5, 2012 at 1:51 PM

        Okay, for all those Princelings who gave me the ol’ thumbs down on that one – doubtless without a clue about what I was referring to in the first place – I apologize. There’s no way Brad Penny bloats up as grotesquely as Prince Fielder in just one season of Japanese baseball. Not even in Fukuoka.


      • Old Gator - Feb 5, 2012 at 2:04 PM

        Awww, hit “post comment” too soon. A coda so my thumbs-downers won’t be acting out of total ignorance as well as delusion and bile: Nakasu is a small island formed by the division of the Nakagawa and Hakatagawa in central Fukuoka city. It’s not only the premiere locale for teppanyaki stalls – there’s a solid wall of them a mile long bordering the Hakatagawa – but it’s also the red light district, or as the Japanese like to call it, the “floating world” (what with being an island and all that, at least in Hakata). So even if he does get fat, he can trundle over from the yatai where he’s been engorging himself to one of the nearby Geisha houses for a hot bath and some exotic strange.

        Great city, by the way – the fast ferry to Inchon can get you to Korea on an off-day for a little sightseeing and some real kimchee that doesn’t taste like renegade cole slaw.

      • proudlycanadian - Feb 5, 2012 at 2:52 PM

        Thanks for the tourist information.

      • cur68 - Feb 5, 2012 at 3:18 PM

        I was going to be happy if he had the chance to hit a pig twixt the eyes with a fastball. Now it seems like he can then have it cooked to his taste after he’s done subduing it. Why don’t more ballplayers go in for ham fighting?

      • Old Gator - Feb 5, 2012 at 4:09 PM

        Probably for the same reason more of them don’t go in for beaver wrestling. Their wives are watching.

      • Old Gator - Feb 5, 2012 at 4:10 PM

        Proudlycanadian: stay tuned. Recommendations for the Jewish delis of Toronto is up next….

      • proudlycanadian - Feb 5, 2012 at 4:38 PM

        I haven’t been to any of the delis for many years. I believe that some of them have closed.

      • proudlycanadian - Feb 5, 2012 at 4:56 PM

        There was a Deli on College at Spadina that I used to visit when I wanted a change from Peter’s Chung King Restaurant a couple of doors away. The deli made a great kishka. The cheese blintzes were also great. I believe that both of those restaurants are closed.

      • Old Gator - Feb 5, 2012 at 8:30 PM

        Caplansky’s is on College at Brunswick, which is, what, four blocks or so west of Spadina? Sure you’re not thinking of that one? Absolutely my favorite Toronto Jewish deli. Amazing cabbage borscht, smoked meat hash for breakfast, huge sandwiches. The house monster is grilled versht and chopped liver on rye with red onions and honey mustard dressing. Dear Buddha, what an evil thing that is. They make their own horseradish and mustard dressing, one of those things that is much more than the sum of its parts. Never had the blintzes but I’ll be back up in the spring and will make a point of checking them out, just in case we’re talking about the same place.

      • proudlycanadian - Feb 5, 2012 at 8:52 PM

        Different one. The first and in my mind the best smoked meat sandwiches I ever had were at the old Northwood Golf and Country club. I was a caddy while in high school and often had a smoked meat sandwich after the 9th hole. Alas, the golf course has been turned into housing.

  4. michiganhockey11 - Feb 6, 2012 at 11:46 AM

    I’m glad the Tigers didn’t pick him back up. He did just call off his engagement with Karina Smirnoff though. He’s go to be hurting inside….

    • Old Gator - Feb 6, 2012 at 9:25 PM

      Not after a nice dinner of fugu with the gutspot left in and an even nicer sojourn upstairs in the Geisha rooms he won’t be.

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