FanPost

Fu-Te Ni Ain't Nothin' Ta F With

ESPN reported on their transaction wire that the Tigers inked Fu-Te Ni to a minor-league deal. 'Kay.

Okay, seriously. As per The Detroit Tigers Weblog, Ni's expected to start the year in AAA and work out of the bullpen. He's a lefty, and... well...

Ni is 26 and from the above video his fastball appears to top out at 87 mph. It looks like he has a breaking ball that sits in the mid 70’s. It appears that he had garnered some interest from the Mariners as well. Ni is billed as The Taiwanese Okajima.

That video, seen here, shows some highlights of Ni starting in the 2008 Olympic Qualification Tournament against Canada, and he makes a few Canuckistani hitters look foolish. (He'd get a no-decision after Taiwan blew a 5-4 lead in the ninth when Mike Saunders drove in The Immortal Stubby Clapp.)

He's the first CPBL player to sign with an MLB team, although a few players out of that league have done well in Japan. Another take from Taiwan Baseball:

In 2008 CPBL play, the two-year pro had 5 wins and 12 losses to go with a 3.34 ERA over 145.1 IP. He led the league in K's with 132 and allowed 35 BB's. Ni throws comfortably in the mid to upper 80's (he's topped out at 93 mph) and throws a slider, curve, changeup, and forkball.

So what're your hopes for the guy? Bullpen arm? Possible starter? Okajima (pre-2007 All-Star break) or Okajima (post-2007 All-Star break)?

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