Itsuki Shoda

From BR Bullpen


Itsuki Shoda (正田 樹)

BR minors page

Biographical Information[edit]

Itsuki Shoda is a curveball specialist who was a Rookie of the Year in Japan.

Shoda was a first-round draft pick of the Nippon Ham Fighters in the 2000 NPB draft. He allowed 11 hits and 3 runs in 6 innings for Nippon Ham in 2000, then surrendered 3 runs in two innings in 2001. In 2002, he broke into the rotation and went 9-11 with a 3.45 ERA, 7th in the Pacific League in the latter category. He tied Carlos Mirabal for second on the Nippon Ham staff in wins, trailing Satoru Kanemura by one. He was named the PL Rookie of the Year.

In 2003, Shoda faded to 5-15, 5.78, surrendering 21 homers and 152 hits in 134 innings. He led the league in losses. In 2004, the 22-year-old southpaw was 8-5 but with a 5.00 ERA and 57 walks in 86 1/3 IP. He was still one of the better hurlers on an unextremely poor staff. In 2005, he went 2-6 with a 6.27 ERA and 1.91 WHIP. The former Rookie of the Year's career record was now 24-37, 4.87.

Shoda spent 2006 in ni-gun and was traded to the Hanshin Tigers for Takehito Kanazawa. He spent the next two seasons in the minor leagues for Hanshin.

For 2009, Shoda signed with Taiwan's Sinon Bulls. He got Sinon's first start of the year, on March 29, and dropped a 12-8 decision to the La New Bears, getting shelled for 7 runs in 1/3 of an inning. He rebounded to go 14-6 with a 4.44 ERA. He led the 2009 CPBL in both wins and strikeouts (115). Back with Sinon in 2010, Shoda went 11-5 with a 2.81 ERA and 116 whiffs. He tied Chien-Fu Yang and Jim Magrane for third in the circuit in victories and was fourth in strikeouts. When Sinon was swept by the Brother Elephants in the 2010 Taiwan Series, Shoda started game one, but lost to Magrane.

For 2011, Shoda signed a minor league deal with the Boston Red Sox. He was released at the end of spring training.