MEET YOUR IMPORTS
Brisbane has not been left behind in the International player stakes for season 2011/12, with no less than five Japanese imports heading to sunny Queensland. All five are currently playing in the Fukuoka Southbank Hawks system. The Hawks are currently in the playoffs having won the Pacific Division Title by a whopping 17.5 games over the second placed Hokkaido Nippon Ham Fighters.
It is yet to be seen whether the Hawks imports bring their party style downunder – they apparently downed (or at least sprayed) no less than 3,000 bottles of champagne in 20 minutes after taking down the Pacific Division minor round title this season! One can only wonder what they will get up to if the Hawks win the whole championship!
The Southbank Hawks are sending two middle infielders, a catcher, an outfielder and a pitcher to the Bandits. The pitcher is Yohei Yanagawa, a right-hander who has the most experience at the top level of all the imports. While most of the imports have been part of the developmental or Japanese “farm” system with the Hawks, Yanagawa pitched 7 innings with the “big” club this season. Here’s a closer look at Yanagawa….