Professional baseball “Tazawa rule” decided to abolish September 7 at 9:03 p.m.
Professional baseball refused to be nominated at the draft meeting and decided to abolish the so-called Tazawa Rule, which allows players who have signed contracts with overseas baseball teams to return to Japan but cannot sign a contract with a professional baseball team for a certain period of time.
“Tazawa Rule” is a rule that Junichi Tazawa, who played for the Red Sox in the Major Leagues, admired by 12 teams after he advanced to the major leagues directly from professional baseball in 2008.
In “Tazawa Rule”, a player who refused to be nominated at a draft meeting of professional baseball and signed a contract with an overseas baseball team could not contract with a professional baseball team for three years from high school after his contract with the baseball team expired, and for two years from university and professional baseball.
Since the Executive Committee held on July 7 decided to remove the Tazawa Rule, each team was able to nominate Pitcher Tazawa at a draft meeting to be held on the 26th of next month.
According to the NPB-Japan Baseball Organization, there have been calls from several baseball teams for a review since around 2012, so it has been under consideration since Pitcher Tazawa returned to Japan and joined Saitama in the Independent League and BC League, and was asked to be removed from the players’ association.
Mr. Kaoru Ihara, Director General of NPB, explained that the reason for the decision to abolish it was that “the training environment for players from 12 teams is much better than it was in 2008, and the evaluation that it is much better in terms of compensation, treatment, and training environment than belonging to the minor leagues in the United States has become established in the amateur baseball world in recent years.”
Pitcher Tazawa “I’m really happy about the repeal of the rules”
Junichi Tazawa, who plays in Saitama in the BC League, an independent league based in Kumagai City, Saitama Prefecture, said, “I’m really happy that we decided to remove the rules. Thank you to everyone who worked so hard. In the future, if there is a team that needs me, I hope to be able to play on the NPB stage. For that purpose, I’m going to throw as much as I can at the Saitama Musashi Heat Bears. Thank you for your continued support.”
Executive Director of the Professional Baseball Players Association “Thanks for the decision to abolish”
On the removal of the Tazawa Rule, Tadahito Mori, Executive Director of the Professional Baseball Players Association, said, “Thank you for your decision to abolish it. It was good that there was no one rule that disappointed young people who want to try overseas. I think it’s good for baseball to spread baseball by bringing back players who have achieved results overseas and getting a lot of attention and boosting Japanese baseball. However, there is a sense of incongruity in the fact that players with a proven track record overseas, such as Tazawa pitchers, are nominated at the same draft meeting as amateur rookies, and the number of amateurs is reduced, so we would like to discuss making proper rules rather than simply removing them.”