Yusei Kikuchi

Yusei Kikuchi

30-Year-Old PitcherSP
Toronto Blue Jays
2022 Fantasy Outlook
Kikuchi appeared set to deliver the breakout campaign that many projected prior to the 2021 season, maintaining a 3.46 ERA with an 81:26 K:BB across his first 80.2 innings and 13 starts. However, he crumbled from there, posting a 5.42 ERA across his last 16 outings. Perhaps coincidentally, his problems began with the crackdown on the use of foreign substances. When viewing Kikuchi's profile as a whole, home runs remain a significant problem (1.6 HR/9) and his walk rate also remains higher than would be desirable (9.3 BB%). However, by far the biggest problem for Kikuchi is the amount of hard contact he surrenders, highlighted by an 11% barrel rate, 47% hard hit rate, and 91.9 mph average exit velocity. Kikuchi agreed to a three-year, $36 million deal with the Blue Jays and will be pitching in the AL East for the foreseeable future. Read Past Outlooks
RANKSFrom Preseason
#316
ADP
$Signed a three-year, $36 million contract with the Blue Jays in March of 2022.
Fans seven in no-decision
PToronto Blue Jays
May 11, 2022
Kikuchi didn't factor into the decision in Tuesday's 6-5 loss to the Yankees, allowing two runs on two hits and three walks over 5.1 innings. He struck out seven.
ANALYSIS
The southpaw was headed for his second win of the season until Aaron Judge walked it off with a three-run blast off Blue Jays closer Jordan Romano in the bottom of the ninth inning. Kikuchi appears to have turned a corner, posting a 14:4 K:BB in 11.1 innings over his last two starts with a 2.38 ERA and 0.79 WHIP, but Seattle fans can attest to the rollercoaster ride that the Kikuchi experience can be over a full season.
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Pitching Stats
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2022
2021
2020
2019
2022 MLB Game Log
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2021 MLB Game Log
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2020 MLB Game Log
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2019 MLB Game Log
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Pitching Appearances Breakdown
Average Pitch Count
81
Last 10 Games
81
Last 5 Games
80
How many pitches does Yusei Kikuchi generally throw?
 
1-10
 
11-20
 
21-30
 
31-40
 
41-50
 
51-60
 
61-70
 
71-80
 
81-90
 
91-100
 
101-110
 
111-120
 
121+
 
1-10
 
11-20
 
21-30
 
31-40
 
41-50
 
51-60
 
61-70
 
71-80
 
81-90
 
91-100
 
101-110
 
111-120
 
121+
 
1-10
 
11-20
 
21-30
 
31-40
 
41-50
 
51-60
 
61-70
 
71-80
 
81-90
 
91-100
 
101-110
 
111-120
 
121+
What part of the game does Yusei Kikuchi generally pitch?
 
 
 
1st
 
 
 
2nd
 
 
 
3rd
 
 
 
4th
 
 
 
5th
 
 
 
6th
 
 
 
7th
 
 
 
8th
 
 
 
9th
 
Extra
 
 
 
1st
 
 
 
2nd
 
 
 
3rd
 
 
 
4th
 
 
 
5th
 
 
 
6th
 
 
 
7th
 
 
 
8th
 
 
 
9th
 
Extra
 
 
 
1st
 
 
 
2nd
 
 
 
3rd
 
 
 
4th
 
 
 
5th
 
 
 
6th
 
 
 
7th
 
 
 
8th
 
 
 
9th
 
Extra
% Games Reaching Innings Threshold
% Games By Number of Innings Pitched
Left/Right Pitching Splits
Since 2020
 
 
-29%
BAA vs LHP
2022
 
 
-4%
BAA vs RHP
2021
 
 
-46%
BAA vs LHP
2020
 
 
-18%
BAA vs RHP
BAA Batters K BB H 2B 3B HR
Since 2020vs Left .183 221 56 16 37 5 0 7
Since 2020vs Right .256 745 180 81 168 43 3 27
2022vs Left .217 26 5 1 5 1 0 2
2022vs Right .208 88 22 16 15 8 0 2
2021vs Left .147 146 40 10 20 2 0 5
2021vs Right .271 520 123 52 125 26 2 22
2020vs Left .279 49 11 5 12 2 0 0
2020vs Right .228 137 35 13 28 9 1 3
More Splits View More Split Stats
Home/Away Pitching Splits
Since 2020
 
 
-2%
ERA at Home
2022
 
 
-30%
ERA on Road
2021
 
 
-9%
ERA at Home
2020
 
 
-2%
ERA at Home
ERA WHIP IP W L SV K/9 BB/9 HR/9
Since 2020Home 4.50 1.21 112.0 4 7 0 9.7 3.5 1.2
Since 2020Away 4.58 1.43 118.0 6 7 0 8.8 4.3 1.4
2022Home 5.19 1.27 8.2 1 0 0 11.4 4.2 2.1
2022Away 3.63 1.50 17.1 0 1 0 8.3 6.8 1.0
2021Home 4.21 1.22 77.0 2 4 0 9.7 3.2 1.3
2021Away 4.61 1.41 80.0 5 5 0 9.0 3.9 1.8
2020Home 5.13 1.18 26.1 1 3 0 9.2 4.1 0.7
2020Away 5.23 1.45 20.2 1 1 0 8.7 3.5 0.4
More Splits View More Split Stats
Stat Review
How does Yusei Kikuchi compare to other starting pitchers?
This section compares his stats with all starting pitcher seasons from the previous three seasons (minimum 120 innings)*. The bar represents the player's percentile rank. For example, if the bar is halfway across, then the player falls into the 50th percentile for that stat and it would be considered average.

* Exit Velocity, Barrels/BBE %, Balls Hit 95+ MPH %, and Spin Rate are benchmarked against 2019 data (min 120 IP). See here for more exit velocity/barrels stats plus an explanation of current limitations with that data set.
  • K/BB
    Strikeout to walk ratio.
  • K/9
    Average strikeouts per nine innings.
  • BB/9
    Average walks per nine innings.
  • HR/9
    Average home runs allowed per nine innings.
  • Fastball
    Average fastball velocity.
  • ERA
    Earned run average. The average earned runs allowed per nine innings.
  • WHIP
    Walks plus hits per inning pitched.
  • BABIP
    Batting average on balls in play. Measures how many balls in play against a pitcher go for hits.
  • GB/FB
    Groundball to flyball ratio. The higher the number, the more likely a pitcher is to induce groundballs.
  • Left On Base
    The percentage of base runners that a pitcher strands on base over the course of a season.
  • Exit Velocity
    The speed of the baseball as it comes off the bat, immediately after a batter makes contact.
  • Barrels/BBE
    The percentage of batted ball events resulting in a Barrel. A Barrel is a batted ball with similar exit velocity and launch angle to past ones that led to a minimum .500 batting average and 1.500 slugging percentage.
  • Spin Rate
    Spin Rate is the rate of spin on a baseball after it is released. It is measured in revolutions per minute (rpm).
  • Balls Hit 95+ MPH
    The percentage of batted balls hit that met or exceeded the 95 MPH threshold.
  • Swinging Strike
    The percentage of pitches that result in a swing and a miss.
K/BB
1.59
 
K/9
9.3
 
BB/9
5.9
 
HR/9
1.4
 
Fastball
95.0 mph
 
ERA
4.15
 
WHIP
1.42
 
BABIP
.257
 
GB/FB
2.00
 
Left On Base
70.1%
 
Exit Velocity
84.1 mph
 
Barrels/BBE
7.5%
 
Spin Rate
2258 rpm
 
Balls Hit 95+ MPH
26.3%
 
Swinging Strike
11.7%
 
Prospect Rankings History
Advanced Pitching Stats
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Defensive Stats
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Stats Vs Today's Lineup
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Recent RotoWire Articles Featuring Yusei Kikuchi
Weekly Pitcher Rankings: Mercury Rising
2 days ago
Todd Zola ranks the week's starting pitching as warming weather is contributing to more scoring. Sugar Shane McClanahan only has one start, but still tops the AL rankings.
Collette Calls: Still Chasing Wins
3 days ago
Wins have been hard to come by this season. Jason Collette examines early run-support numbers and notes pitchers that have enjoyed good fortune in that regard, and those that have not, like Corbin Burnes.
Yahoo DFS Baseball: Tuesday Picks
6 days ago
Mike Barner tees up Tuesday's Yahoo slate, turning to a Cardinals stack against Baltimore.
FanDuel MLB: Tuesday Targets
6 days ago
Chris Bennett looks over Tuesday's slate and thinks Wander Franco should deliver another big performance.
Weekly Pitcher Rankings: Knock on Woodruff
9 days ago
Todd Zola ranks the week's starting pitching as two-start Brandon Woodruff is looking good after a rough opener.
Past Fantasy Outlooks
2021
2020
2019
2016
On the surface, Kikuchi has had some rough sledding in his transition from pitching in Japan to pitching in the majors. Two consecutive season of bad ratios and a lack of wins while pitching for a perpetually rebuilding Seattle franchise. If you solely focus on the surface stats, you will miss the progress he is making as a pitcher. The southpaw added a new cutter in 2020 and made it his primary pitch, but like with anything new, it took some time getting used to. Kikuchi struggled with walks, but still struck out nearly a quarter of the hitters he faced and his expected stats do not look like they belong to a guy coming off a 5.17 ERA and 1.30 WHIP season. The cutter helped him greatly against righties as their weighted on-base average against him dropped 75 points year over year. Seattle is not a great team, but Kikuchi is a good pitcher whose surface stats create a strong buying opportunity in 2021.
Kikuchi fell far short of expectations in his first major-league season, posting a 5.46 ERA and 1.52 WHIP after recording a 2.50 ERA and 1.05 WHIP over three seasons in Japan. The 28-year-old struggled to miss bats, posting a 16.1 K% that would have ranked fourth worst among major-league starters had he logged enough innings to qualify, along with a middling 8.8% swinging-strike rate. The Mariners took measures to limit Kikuchi's workload as he adjusted to the rigors of the MLB schedule. The southpaw served up a whopping 36 home runs despite throwing only 161.2 frames, with right-handed batters teeing off to the tune of .304/.359/.545 against Kikuchi. He figures to have a rotation spot on a rebuilding Mariners club, but there is little reason to think a big improvement is coming in his second big-league season. Throw your dart elsewhere.
A three-time All-Star in Japan (2013, 2017, 2018), Kikuchi was 14-4 with a 3.08 ERA, an 8.4 K/9 and a 2.5 BB/9 in 2018. He has a mid-90s fastball that he uses to set up a plus slider. While not regarded in quite the same star tier of Shohei Ohtani or Yu Darvish, the 27-year-old lefty still projects as at least a solid mid-rotation starter in MLB. Kikuchi signed a three-year, $43 million deal with the Mariners, with a $13 million player option for a fourth year and a team option for a four-year, $66 million extension after the first three years. He was dominant in 2017, logging 217 strikeouts in 187.2 innings -- both career highs. Kikuchi was similarly dominant in 2018 until a shoulder injury caused him to miss a month, and while he was able to return, he wasn't quite the same after that. He will be adapting to a new schedule where he'll pitch more frequently, so we should not expect the 6-foot hurler to log more than 160 innings on a rebuilding Mariners team.
Kikuchi attracted attention as a high schooler for his hard fastball and stated desire to forego a pro career in Japan and jump straight to the majors. That didn't happen, and injuries have so far deterred him from reaching his potential. Still only 24, Kikuchi showed signs of improvement in 2015 and if he can put together a couple of healthy seasons, he could establish himself as a quality lefty.
More Fantasy News
Snags first win of 2022
PToronto Blue Jays
May 4, 2022
Kikuchi picked up the win Wednesday against the Yankees, tossing six innings and surrendering one run on three hits and a walk while striking out seven against the Yankees.
ANALYSIS
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Tweaks arsenal but struggles again
PToronto Blue Jays
April 29, 2022
Kikuchi scrapped his cutter in Friday's start against the Astros, Mitch Bannon of SI.com reports. He gave up four runs on four hits and three walks while striking out four in 2.2 innings.
ANALYSIS
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Walks five in no-decision
PToronto Blue Jays
April 24, 2022
Kikuchi allowed four runs (two earned) on three hits and five walks over 3.2 innings in Sunday's loss to Houston. He struck out four and did not factor in the decision.
ANALYSIS
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Solid against Red Sox
PToronto Blue Jays
April 19, 2022
Kikuchi tossed five innings of one-run ball, surrendering three hits while walking three batters and striking out three in Tuesday's loss to the Red Sox. He did not factor into the decision.
ANALYSIS
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Inefficient in Tuesday's loss
PToronto Blue Jays
April 13, 2022
Kikuchi (0-1) took the loss Tuesday, giving up three runs (two earned) on five hits and two walks over 3.1 innings as the Blue Jays were downed 4-0 by the Yankees. He struck out two.
ANALYSIS
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