Rangers push deeper into Asian player market

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ARLINGTON, Texas, Nov. 8 (14:22) Kyodo

A year after his successful pursuit of Yu Darvish, Texas Rangers
general manager Jon Daniels was quoted on Thursday as saying Asia is
his team's next frontier.

The Rangers, who are currently showing interest in high school
right-hander Shohei Otani as well as free agent closer Kyuji
Fujikawa, are also apparently in the running for South Korean lefty
Ryu Hyun Jin, according to a story in the Thursday edition of the
Dallas Morning News. Ryu, who is being posted by his South Korean
club, the Hanwha Eagles, threw seven innings in the 2009 World
Baseball Classic.

"We look at it (Asia) like we did the Caribbean," Daniels was
quoted as saying at Major League Baseball's general managers meetings
in Indian Wells, California.

"We focused on the Dominican Republic first, got our hands
around it and grasped it and then started spreading to other
countries, to Venezuela, to Panama, to Curacao."

Six years ago, the Rangers were one of a flock of major league
clubs pursuing right-hander Daisuke Matsuzaka. The process of
obtaining up-close looks at the Japanese game helped them land
right-hander Colby Lewis in 2010 after he had led the Central League
in strike outs for two consecutive seasons.

Daniels declined to talk about Otani, whom they have spoken
with, but acknowledged obliquely at least a passing interest in

"We are going to consider everything," Daniels said. "The
bullpen is a priority..."

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