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Robbie Erlin To Sign With Nippon Ham Fighters

Left-hander Robbie Erlin has agreed to a one-year contract with the Nippon Ham Fighters of Japan’s Pacific League, Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic reports.

This will be the first overseas baseball experience for the 30-year-old Erlin, a third-round pick in 2009 and a well-regarded prospect in the past. Unfortunately, though, Erlin hasn’t been able to establish himself in the majors, where he owns a 4.85 ERA (and a much more respectable 3.79 FIP) across 339 2/3 innings with three different teams.

At his best, Erlin gave the Padres 109 innings and 39 appearances (12 starts) of 4.21 ERA/3.31 FIP pitching with 7.27 K/9 and a minuscule 0.99 BB/9 in 2018. His numbers went downhill during the previous two seasons, though, especially this past year. Between Pittsburgh and Atlanta, the soft-tossing Erlin recorded a dismal 8.10 ERA/6.23 FIP across 26 2/3 innings, though he did post 8.44 strikeouts per nine against 2.36 walks. The Braves released him in the middle of September.

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