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December 18, 2013 at 8:45 AM

Sox acquire Watanabe, Carpenter to Japan

The Red Sox announced on Tuesday that they have acquired reliever Shunsuke Watanabe from the Chiba Lotte Mariners of Japan's Nippon Professional Baseball League (NPB). The 37-year-old right-hander with the submarine delivery did not receive a major league spring training invite, so he will report to minor league spring training where he will work as a reliever. 

Watanabe worked primarily as a starter in Japan, where he compiled an 87-82 record with a 3.65 ERA. He does not miss many bats, striking out only 4.8 batters per nine innings in his career, but he has also showed good control as he has walked only 2.2 batters per nine. Watanabe's submarine delivery received national attention during his appearances in the World Baseball Classic, where he pitched for Japan in 2006 and 2009. As you can see in this photo from the Washington Post, Watanabe's hand is almost scraping the ground when he releases the ball.  

The Red Sox also sold right-hander Chris Carpenter (pictured) to the Yakult Swallows of the NPB on Tuesday. Carpenter, who underwent Tommy John surgery in 2012, threw only 50 2/3 innings last season, going 0-2 with a 4.96 ERA with the PawSox. Carpenter was acquired from the Cubs in February 2012 as part of the Theo Epstein compensation.

Photo Credit: Chris Carpenter by Kelly O'Connor