And he’s gone, gone, gone, woah-woah-woah. After struggling in his second Major League season, the Mets released reliever Ryota Igarashi from his contract, which ended after the 2011 season regardless. The 32 year-old right-handed pitcher is now a free agent.
Igarashi came over from Japan before the 2010, and signed a two-year, $3 million deal with the Mets. The righty struggled in his debut season, posting a dismal 7.12 ERA, 1.54 WHIP, and 1.39 K/BB. The import was demoted to the Minors where he fared better (3.00 ERA, 1.45 WHIP, 3.86 K/BB), but surrendered far too many hits (10.5 Hits/9).
Unfortunately for Ryota, his 2011 season wasn’t much better. The 32 year-old a 4.66 ERA, 1.83 WHIP, and 1.50 K/BB. While the righty did strikeout more hitters in 2011 than he did in 2010, he also walked more batters (from 5.3 BB/9 to 6.5 BB/9) and allowed more hits (from 8.6 Hits/9 to 10.0 Hits/9).
Given his stint in Triple-A (0.87 ERA, 0.77 WHIP, 3.78 K/bb), there’s a good chance another franchise will ink him on a Minor League deal. Needless to say, the Ryota Igarashi experiment was not a successful one.