Dodgers Team News

Dodgers’ Austin Barnes Believes Yoshinobu Yamamoto Will Be One of the Best in the Game

Generally, teams give the most lucrative contracts to the best players in the sport. So, the Dodgers surprised the baseball world when they made Yoshinobu Yamamoto the highest-paid pitcher in baseball despite not having thrown a ball in MLB.

His time playing in the new league has certainly been an adjustment. Not only is he playing in a new country and on a new team, but he also has to handle a new baseball.

Dodgers veteran catcher Austin Barnes has faith in his new teammate. He thinks once Yamamoto gets adjusted he could become one of the game’s best,

“When he gets his feet under him, I think he’ll be one of the best pitchers in this game.”

Austin Barnes via Jack Harris of the L.A. Times

Barnes had a front-row seat to Yamamoto’s dominance during their last game against the Chicago Cubs. Yamamoto loaded the bases in the first two innings but worked his way out of the jam.

He then retired the next 10 batters he faced. Yamamoto finished the game going five innings, allowing zero runs, giving up three hits and striking out eight batters.

Yamamoto has not exactly had a routine start to his MLB career. He experienced a rather unusual offseason where he had to adjust to the new league, but also make his first start in South Korea.

He did not make it out of the first inning in that start after giving up five earned runs. This raised questions as to whether or not the Dodgers made a good decision signing the three-time NPB MVP.

Since then, however, Yamamoto has seemed to settle a bit with Los Angeles. After that first start, he’s pitched 10 innings without surrendering a run and striking out 13 batters.

It’s a small sample size but he’s shown why the Dodgers trusted him with a 12-year contract. He’s only 25 years old as well, so he’s still developing as a young pitcher.

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Kevin Skinner

Graduated from Creighton University with a degree in Biology and Philosophy. Despite growing up in San Diego, loves all thing Los Angeles sports

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