Koyo Aoyagi

From BR Bullpen


Koyo Aoyagi (青柳 晃洋)

  • Bats Right, Throws Right
  • Height 5' 11", Weight 174 lb.

BR register page

Biographical Information[edit]

Koyo Aoyagi has made multiple All-Star teams. He throws both sidearm and submarine.

Aoyagi was the 5th-round pick of the Hanshin Tigers in the 2015 NPB draft. [1] He was 4-5 with a 3.29 ERA for Hanshin in 2016, with only 41 hits in 68 1/3 IP but walking 40. He was the third player in Nippon Pro Baseball history to win his debut start in an interleague game, following Yu Darvish and Kenji Otonari. [2] Oddly, his first NPB hit was a bunt, off Kazuto Taguchi. [3] He was 2-0 with a save and a 1.69 ERA in the Asia Winter League, following Yuta Iwasada as the second straight Hanshin pitcher to be named AWL Pitcher of the Year. [4]

He split 2017 between the big club (4-4, 3.22 in 12 G) and the farm (3-6, 2.93). In 2018, he only pitched four games for the big team (1-1, 3.32) but starred in the minors (8-2, 2.73, 70 K in 69 1/3 IP). He tied for the Western League lead in wins. He made his first Central League All-Star team the next year, working innings 5 and 6 of the 2019 NPB All-Star Game 2 (in between Yuya Yanagi and Hiroki Tokoda) and allowing one hit in two shutout innings as the CL beat the Pacific League. [5] He finished the season at 9-9, 3.14. He tied Yudai Ono for 8th in the CL in wins, tied Daichi Osera and Haruto Takahashi for 3rd in losses and was 6th in ERA (between Yuki Nishi and Osera). [6]

The right-hander fell to 7-9, 3.36 in 2020. He led the CL in losses. Things were much better to begin 2021 as he was 8-2 with a 1.79 ERA after 14 games; he was monthly MVP in June (4 W, 1.20). In 2021 NPB All-Star Game 2, he relieved Suguru Iwazaki in the 6th with a 3-1 deficit. He retired Takashi Ogino and Hiroaki Samauchi, walked Tomoya Mori and got Hotaka Yamakawa on a grounder. He was succeeded by Yasuaki Yamasaki. [7]

He is on Japan's team for the Tokyo Olympics. [8] He made two appearances for the Gold Medal winners. In the opener, he relieved Yoshinobu Yamamoto in the 7th of a scoreless game with the Dominican Republic. He allowed a single to Juan Francisco, struck out Johan Mieses, gave up another single (to Erick Mejia), retired Jeison Guzmán then gave up a two-run double to Charlie Valerio. He walked Gustavo Núñez and Kaima Taira came in to escape further damage. He got a no-decision when Japan rallied. His other game was also rough; succeeding Suguru Iwazaki in the 5th with a 3-3 tie against Team USA, he allowed hits to Eddy Alvarez and Tyler Austin then a three-run dinger for Triston Casas. Todd Frazier singled before Aoyagi got his first out, Eric Filia. Mark Kolozsvary singled then Jack López hit into a double play. Kodai Senga took over; Japan again rallied to save him from taking a loss. His 27.00 ERA was third-highest in the Olympics, after Oliver Pérez and Alex Katz. [9]