Shintaro Fujinami Apr 26, 2023; Anaheim, California, USA; Oakland Athletics starting pitcher Shintaro Fujinami (11) throws against the Los Angeles Angels during the seventh inning at Angel Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

The New York Mets made an intriguing addition to their pitching staff Friday, reportedly signing right-hander Shintaro Fujinami.

The New York Post‘s Jon Heyman reported it’s a one-year deal worth $3.35 million, with up to $850,000 in incentives.

That seems like a great deal for what Fujinami offers. The 29-year-old former Japanese baseball star has a fastball that tops out at 101 mph. After making his MLB debut last season, he made seven starts and 19 relief appearances in stints with the Oakland Athletics and Baltimore Orioles.

He posted a 7.18 ERA and 1.494 WHIP. Yes, that screams “Project,” but pitching coaches are thrilled to work with young pitchers (he’s 29 years old) bringing triple-digit heat.

In fact, Fujinami looked much improved in 10 appearances out of the bullpen after going to Baltimore, posting a 4.85 ERA (4.13 FIP).

It’s definitely a low-risk/high-reward prospect for the Mets. Given their bloated payroll, the highest in MLB in 2023, they need some bargain players to help fill needs.

The MLB world — and Mets fans — really liked the move.

[Jon Heyman]

About Arthur Weinstein

Arthur spends his free time traveling around the U.S. to sporting events, state and national parks, and in search of great restaurants off the beaten path.