Tawaza's a Sock.
The Rangers were believed to have offered Tazawa more money than the Red Sox. In this case, the presence of Matsuzaka might have put the Red Sox over the top. Tazawa spoke with both Matsuzaka and Okajima before officially signing with Boston.
"There are three main reasons," Tazawa said on Thursday afternoon during a news conference at Fenway Park, responding to the question of why he chose the Sox. "One is their development program is excellent. Another is that there are Japanese players here, as well as Japanese staff and Japanese speakers who are part of the Red Sox organization. The third reason is that the Red Sox were the first team to scout me."
"His fastball has increased in velocity in the time we've been scouting him. Most recently, he was sitting 91 to 94 [mph]," Epstein said. "He pitches comfortably in the low 90s with very effective command and the ability to use that fastball to all quadrants of the strike zone. [He has a] four-seamer and two-seamer, but primarily two-seam. He's got a good split-fingered pitch. He's got two breaking balls, a slider and a curveball. His slider is a plus pitch as well."
How good will he be? Only time will tell.