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Japanese Star So Taguchi to Join Ravens

August 6, 2002 - Eastern League (EL1)
New Haven Ravens News Release

The St. Louis Cardinals have sent outfielder So Taguchi, a five-time Gold Glove winner in Japan, to the New Haven Ravens. Taguchi, 33, signed a three-year contract with the Cardinals last January after a ten-year career in Japan. He has spent the majority of this season with Triple-A Memphis but did receive a brief call-up to St. Louis in mid-June, going 0-for-4 in four games. With the Redbirds, he was hitting .248 with five homeruns and 36 RBIs in 303 at-bats. He also had six steals.

In Japan, Taguchi (pronounced Tah-gu-CHEE) was a teammate of Seattle Mariners outfielder Ichiro Suzuki on the Orix Blue Wave. He was known as “Shotgun.” In addition to his five Gold Gloves, he was named to the Pacific League “Best 9” postseason All-Star team in 1996 and played for the Japanese National Team during the Summer Olympics in 2000. Last season, he finished 16th in the Pacific League with a .280 batting average. Taguchi was a first-round draft pick by the Blue Wave out of Kansai Gakuin University, where he set a league record for hits that still stands.

Taguchi takes the roster spot of outfielder Covelli “CoCo” Crisp. The Cleveland Indians selected Crisp as the player to be named later in the Chuck Finley deal, which also included Ravens outfielder Luis Garcia. Crisp has been assigned to Akron, the Indians’ Double-A Eastern League affiliate.

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