Perhaps inspired by former Cub Matt Murton, who this season broke Ichiro Suzuki's single-season hits record in Japan, Micah Hoffpauir is headed across the Pacific.
Several reporters have confirmed that Hoffpauir has signed a one-year deal with the Nippon Ham Fighters of Japan's Pacific League. Hoffpauir, 30, has bounced between Triple-A and the Cubs the past three seasons as a pinch-hitter and utility man, batting .251/.312/.421.
Also, just so you can look smart in front of your friends, the Nippon Ham Fighters do not fight ham, literally or metaphorically. "Nippon Ham" is the sponsor, and "Fighters" is the mascot. As a Japanese friend once told me, "Think of it as like the 'Oscar Mayer Bologna Warriors.'"
-- David Andriesen
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