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If Shohei Otani is baseball's Superman, the Phillies should make a push for him

If Shohei Otani is baseball's Superman, the Phillies should make a push for him

Is Shohei Otani baseball's Superman?

No, he cannot run faster than a locomotive or leap over tall buildings in a single bound.
 
But he throws 100-plus mph fastballs and hits bombs that have the power to break through a stadium roof (literally). And he’s only 22 years old.  
 
Here's some proof: Otani's home run that went through the roof at the Tokyo Dome.

And him pitching over 100 mph -- yes, he does look a bit like Yu Darvish when he pitches.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k7F7Ri1y_qQ

Unfortunately, Otani is currently on the other side of the Pacific Ocean. Jon Wertheim from CBS' 60 Minutes highlighted the Japanese superstar on Sunday night, deeming him the Japanese Babe Ruth because of his prowess as both a pitcher and a hitter.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y5XiobgdYoY

Should the Phillies make a push to get Otani? Why wouldn't they? Despite the fact that Otani would likely be better suited for an American League team where he could pitch every five days and hit as a DH on off days (if an AL team is open to such a unique arangement). The Phillies should still make a push because he would be relatively cheap at age 22 thanks to MLB’s new collective bargaining agreement.
 
Under MLB’s new CBA, any international player under the age of 25 is now capped at a $6 million signing bonus. However, Otani says he is not looking to wait three more years when the chance for a bigger pay day would open up.
 
"Personally, I don’t care how much I get paid or how much less I get paid because of this," Otani said through a translator in the 60 Minutes segment.

His numbers are astonishing.

Otani, who plays for the Nippon Fighting Hams, has thrown the fastest pitch in league history at 102.5 mph.

As a starting pitcher last season, he went 10-4 with a 1.86 ERA and averaged 11.9 strikeouts per nine innings.
 
His four-year pitching record for Nippon is 39-13 with a 2.49 ERA and 595 strikeouts.

The 2016 season was Otani’s best year at the plate. He hit .322 with 22 home runs and 67 RBIs. This performance earned him the league's MVP.
 
John Gibson, a reporter who has covered Japaneese baseball for over 20 years, told CBS that the 22-year-old is simply unbelievable.
 
"You think about a guy who throws 101 (mph) and then a guy who hits home runs and that's a comic-book character," Gibson said. "That's not somebody you're thinking about in real life. You know, nobody does that. Who does that?"

Eagles fans, get Malcolm Jenkins that petition on Pete Morelli

Eagles fans, get Malcolm Jenkins that petition on Pete Morelli

The online petition to ban Pete Morelli from officiating Eagles games is rapidly gaining signatures.

Count Malcolm Jenkins for one.

"I would definitely sign that petition if it came across my desk," Jenkins said with a laugh to NBC Sports Philadelphia's John Clark on Monday at the safety's Blitz, Bow Ties and Bourbon charity event.

The Eagles beat the Panthers, 28-23, last Thursday night despite a significant discrepancy in penalty yards. It was a game officiated by Morelli's crew — and you can see why that's notable by clicking right here.

"We felt like a lot of those were ticky-tack, or weren’t good calls," Jenkins said after the game. "For us, adversity is nothing new for us. We just kind of strap up and keep playing, and hunker down. We continue to play aggressively, that is the biggest thing. We don’t want that to take away our aggression, or our ability to make plays. So we just go to the next play."

What about the next signature? 

Eagles fans just need to get that petition to Jenkins' desk.

Dodgers fan wearing Chase Utley jersey catches Justin Turner home run ball for 2nd year in a row

mlb.com-dodgers-fan-catches-baseball-in-utley-jersey.png
MLB

Dodgers fan wearing Chase Utley jersey catches Justin Turner home run ball for 2nd year in a row

Dodgers fans had a reason to be ecstatic on Sunday night after Justin Turner hit a walk-off three-run homer in the bottom of the ninth to beat the Cubs, 4-1, and give Los Angeles a 2-0 lead in the NLCS.

But not as ecstatic as one fan in particular.

Keith Hupp, a retired police officer and lifelong Dodgers fan, was waiting under the home run ball in the center-field stands and snagged it with his son's glove. He was also wearing a Dodgers Chase Utley jersey.

He even made the catch with his non-preferred hand.

“I’m a lefty,” Hupp said to J.P. Hoornstra of the Orange County Register. “I’ve dislocated my right shoulder so many times, I had to resort to my son’s glove on my left hand. So the last five or six home run balls I’ve caught, I’ve caught with my left hand.”

And the craziest part about this story is that it wasn't the first time it had happened. Hupp caught Turner's sixth-inning solo homer in Game 3 of last year's NLCS against the Cubs in almost the same place, the center-field stands at Dodger Stadium.

Although he has 24 home run balls in his collection, Hupp won't be keeping last night's game-winner. After making the catch, he gave the ball to a security guard, and was escorted underneath the stadium to meet Turner and make a trade with him. 

In a postgame interview with MLB.com, Turner said Hupp couldn't decide what he wanted for the ball right away. They exchanged information and agreed that Hupp will get back to Turner in a few days when he decides what he wants.

Twitter had some good responses to Hupp's memorable home run catch: