RHP Hashimoto traded to Tohoku Rakuten for OF Kusuki

Kusuki enters the outfield mix.

As of 2PM on Monday this bit of news still hasn’t been reported by either Tokyo or Tohoku’s websites, but it appears that 32 year old RHP Yoshitaka Hashimoto is being sent to Tohoku in exchange for 27 year old OF Yusuke Kusuki.

Hashimoto made 17 appearances for the Swallows in 2011 and had a 4.34 ERA through 18 and two-thirds innings of work.

This marks the second time in his career that Hashimoto has been traded. He was initially drafted in 2004 by the Fighters.

Tokyo’s new acquisition, Kusuki, spent the entirety of 2011 at ni-gun (farm team) and put up half-decent numbers. He had a .248/.338/.371 slash line and hit four homers in 210 at-bats. Other than that, Kusuki had four lackluster top-team appearances in 2010.

It’s a little difficult to see how a pitcher for an unproven outfielder is a fair trade, but Kusuki is rumored to have a little bit of pop, so he could prove to be an OK competitive addition to the field of players aiming to lock down one of the two open outfield spots (left and center).

Hopefully the change of scenery will rouse whatever potential greatness Tohoku saw when they drafted him from Panasonic back in 2008.

Check Yakyu Baka for detailed top team stats for both players.

About Christopher Pellegrini

Christopher is a budding sabermetrician and long-time supporter of Tokyo's more lovable team, the Swallows. He has publicly volunteered, several times, that he plans to buy the team at some point in the future. When he finally runs the joint, it is likely that he will fine any player who swings at the first pitch or sac bunts (unless it's a pitcher, of course). Follow him on Twitter: @chrispellegrini