Friday, November 7, 2008

2nd Signing of the (Day) Post-season!

The Astros announced this afternoon they have signed 22-year old Taiwanese reliever Chia-Jen Lo, who, I'm sorry, but can we please call him "JLo?" Easy Eddie Wade said this: "`A year ago, we talked about the importance of establishing a presence on the Pacific Rim in order to take advantage of another significant talent stream," general manager Ed Wade said. "At that time, we tasked Glen Barker with overseeing our scouting in Taiwan, China, Japan, Korea and Australia."

So hooray for Ed Wade and Glen Barker, Director of Pacific Rim Scouting, for establishing that presence with a young reliever. Back in March it was reported that the Red Sox offered Lo a $200,000 signing bonus, but he turned it down because it was considered too low. The Astros are believed to have offered $250,000.

The blog TaiwanBaseball listed Lo as being anywhere from 5'10" to 6'1" and he throws hard. Real specific, I know. His NBC Olympics bio has no pictures, but lists him at 5'11" and 176 lbs. But hey, at least he'll be a question mark for opponents. Back in October, TaiwanBaseball reported that Lo threw in a college tournament averaging 93-94 mph with good movement and topped out at 96 mph.

Pitching in the Olympics with Taiwan this summer it came out that he had a possible history of an injured shoulder (but so do I, when you think about it. And anything's possible. I have a possible history of an injured foot, too.) with as much command as a wedding reception right hook.

Regardless, Lo was signed to a minor league contract and this is a low-risk, high-reward deal for the Astros.