Friday, December 14, 2007

Sorting Through Kuroda Rumors

There have been a lot of rumors and reports that free agent pitcher Hiroki Kuroda has signed with the Los Angeles Dodgers. No official announcements have been made, however, and we haven't heard anything about him since Tuesday night. Here's what we have:

12/11/07 - 7:30 PM PST - Seattle Times' Geoff Baker (scroll down) brings up rumors out of Japan that Kuroda was to sign with the Dodgers. After making some calls Baker decided that these were completely untrue.

12/12/07 - Early Morning PST - Kyodo News says that Kuroda told his former team, the Hiroshima Carp, that he planned on signing with the Dodgers.

12/12/07 - 1:23 AM PST - Seattle P-I's John Hickey reports the Kuroda-to-LA deal as if it is fact, citing "reports out of Japan".

12/12/07 - 10:27 AM PST - Baker maintains that Kuroda hasn't made up his mind yet, and is simply flying to Los Angeles to meet with his agent Steve Hilliard, who is currently in LA.

12/12/07 - Early Afternoon PST - A Hiroki Kuroda quote surfaces on several media outlets. "I still haven't narrowed down which team I will play for," Kuroda told reporters before his flight to LA. "My agent is in Los Angeles, so I don't know anything until I get there and meet him."

12/12/07 - 4:53 PM PST -'s Ken Gurnick cites these same "reports out of Japan" in saying Kuroda is strongly leaning towards the Dodgers. He went on to say that the Mariners have offered 4 years/$40M and the Royals have offered 4 years/$45M.

12/12/07 - 9:26 PM PST - Jim Street Reported that Kuroda had signed a 3 year/$33M contract with the Dodgers. He said the Mariners were offering 3 years/$36M and bumped that up to 4 years. Street cites three reasons why Kuroda would rather sign with the Dodgers: the Dodgers will play their 50th anniversary season in 2008, Joe Torre is the manager and Kuroda feels the Dodgers are a stronger contender.

There are other reports besides those, but they all say pretty much the same thing. I don't think anyone knows what is truly going on, not even Kuroda. It is now the 14th and we still haven't heard anything concrete about a signing.

One Asian based source told me that the Japanese and Asian media are doing the same thing we're doing over hear, just running with the latest rumor. None of the stories have any backbone and are based on second hand information. Sure, Kuroda could be leaning toward LA, but it's not a done deal yet, and the Mariners, Diamondbacks and Royals aren't going to let him get away that easily. We should know as early as today, but will likely have to wait until after the weekend.

View other Bleeding Blue and Teal posts related to Hiroki Kuroda [HI-KUR]

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