Posted on June 26, 2006 at 7:50 AM
Matsuzaka had to leave Saturday's game due to a groin injury and will have to miss at least one start, JapanBall.com reports. The Seibu Lions right-hander left the mound in the first inning after throwing just 19 pitches against the Lotte Marines.
ROTOWIRE FANTASY ANALYSIS
According to the team trainer, Matsuzaka did not require hospitalization (which, in Japan, may just mean that Matsuzaka's leg didn't fall off). The Lions expect Matsuzaka to return to action in time to start on July 7 against Hokkaido. Matsuzaka is expected to be allowed to sign with an MLB club this winter via the posting system and may be one of the most sought-after free agents on the market, so we'll monitor his progress closely for you. Matsuzaka, MVP at the WBC earlier this year, was in the midst of another dominating season in Japan, going 9-2, 2.05 with an 0.97 WHIP and a 103-to-19 strikeout-to-walk ratio in 92 innings while leading the Pacific League in both wins and strikeouts.