Takashi Saito to Play Back in Japan

Former Major League reliever Takashi Saito will be pitching back in his home country next season.  The 42-year old probably could have found work in the Majors, but he decided to go back to Japan.  He played for the Arizona Diamondbacks last season.

According to NPB Tracker, Saito's deal with Tahoko Rakuten wil officially be announced as early as today.  He is to make about $350,000 (US).  The deal is not official, but NPB Tracker source numerous Japanese outlets.

Saito was 0-0 with a 6.75 ERA in 16 games with the Diamondbacks last season.  It was by far the worst season of his Major League career, but it was also marred by injury.  Saito suffered a strained left hamstring in August and was placed on the 15-day DL.  He also started the year on the DL with calf and shoulder injuries and was not reinstated until July.  So essentially, Saito was healthy for about one month in 2012.

He hopes to stay healthy in Japan and help Rakuten who is re-tooling and trying to pick up as much Major League talent as possible.

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