Yoshinobu Yamamoto’s Dodgers debut is an epic disaster after $325 million deal

Yoshinobu Yamamoto’s Dodgers debut is an epic disaster after $325 million deal

The richest pitching contract in baseball history began in historically disastrous fashion.

$325 million Dodgers right-hander Yoshinobu Yamamoto allowed five runs and lasted just one inning against the Padres in a 15-11 loss in his MLB debut Thursday in Seoul, South Korea.

Yamamoto (0-1) yielded four hits and walked one batter, but did tally two strikeouts in a 43-pitch inning. His ERA now stands at 45.00.


Yoshinobu Yamamoto allowed five runs in one inning Thursday.



Yoshinobu Yamamoto allowed five runs in one inning Thursday.AP


The righty allowed the most runs ever by a Dodgers starting pitcher in their MLB debut, per SB Nation, and the most by a Japan-born starter in their first inning, according to ESPN,

As part of their historic offseason spending frenzy, the Dodgers rewarded Yamamoto the largest pitching contract in MLB history this past offseason.

To beat out the Yankees, Mets and Phillies, among others, Los Angeles gave Yamamoto $325 million over 12 years, beating Yankees ace Gerrit Cole’s previous record by $1 million.

With such a contract comes expectations to be among the league’s best.

And Yamamoto’s first time out proved to be a debacle, adding to what has been a bad 24 hours for the Dodgers as they deal with the fallout from Shohei Ohtani’s interpreter illegal gambling.


Yamamoto’s MLB career began with him surrendering a single, hitting a batter, yielding a two-run triple to Jake Cronenworth and walking a batter before he finally recorded an out via a sacrifice fly by Ha-Seong Kim that gave the Padres an early 3-0 lead.

Dave Roberts (c) talks to Yoshinobu Yamamoto (l) after the first inning.




Dave Roberts (c) talks to Yoshinobu Yamamoto (l) after the first inning.Getty Images
He recorded his first MLB strikeout by fanning Jurickson Profar, but then allowed an RBI double to Luis Campusano and an RBI single to Tyler Wade that gave the Padres a 5-0 advantage before the Dodgers even batted.

Yamamoto struck out Jackson Merrill to mercifully end the damage.

The 25-year-old’s fastball maxed at 97 mph, according to Baseball Savant, and he utilized four pitches Thursday, including a curveball, cutter and splitter.

Yoshinobu Yamamoto threw 43 pitches in his one inning.
Yoshinobu Yamamoto threw 43 pitches in his one inning.AP
This terrible outing follows an uneven spring training for Yamamoto in which he posted an 8.38 ERA spanning 9 2/3 innings, albeit while recording 14 strikeouts.

Yamamoto would be lined up to start again during the Dodgers homestand from March 28-April 3 that features four games against the Cardinals and three versus the rival Giants.

While his outing stood out, the Dodgers had pitching problems throughout the game as six other pitchers combined to allow 10 runs in eight innings.



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