Japanese infielder Ryosuke Kikuchi won’t be coming to the majors in 2020. Kikuchi’s Nippon Professional Baseball team – the Hiroshima Carp – posted him Dec. 3, which gave him a chance to sign with a big league club through Jan. 2. But Kikuchi announced this week that he’ll remain in his homeland, according to Sanspo (hat tip to Patrick Newman of NPB Tracker).
“The market moved slowly, so I took the decision that it would be better to inform the team early that I would stay,” Kikuchi said. “I was really torn.”
Kikuchi spent the previous eight years as a member of the Carp, with whom he developed a strong defensive reputation at second base. The soon-to-be 30-year-old’s offense hasn’t quite been up to par, though, as evidenced by his .271/.315/.391 line across 4,695 plate appearances in NPB.
Unfortunately for Kikuchi, his lack of offensive prowess no doubt worked against him as he tried to find a major league deal. Moreover, it surely didn’t help Kikuchi’s cause that he was an…