Kodai Senga, one of the many newer faces on the squad, has told reporters after his first ever bullpen session with the team that it was “so-so”.
In the session, Senga displayed his fastball, slider, and ghost forkball in a 52-pitch set. The Japanese right-hander topped his fastball out at 96 MPH as he was trying to adjust to the sharper mound slope as well as the bigger baseball.
However, the latter of the two, not so much.
“When I first started to feel the MLB ball, back when I was in Japan, I would play catch without it being rubbed up, as it is here… It’s rubbed up every time and I have the MLB rosin, so I think I am getting used to it pretty well. “ Senga said through the interpreter.
“As of right now, I don’t feel that the ball has any effect on the so-so bullpen [session]. It’s mostly just the steepness of the mound. Perhaps it’s the climate that is helping with the tackiness of the ball, but as of right now the ball hasn’t bothered me at all.”
When asked about his expectations going into his rookie year with the Mets, Kodai Senga didn’t hesitate to praise the rotation, especially the bottom half.
“Those two [Verlander and Scherzer] are legends in the baseball world, and even the other two are very distinguished… They have had long careers, much longer careers than I have had, so I just need to make sure I am able to go into the season and not be the odd one out.” Senga once again said through his interpreter.
Personally, I can’t wait for Spring Training to start and I know I’m not alone. I genuinely believe that Senga will have the New York crowd on his side, and will win everyone over pretty quickly.