The SoftBank Hawks have called up Carter Stewart Jr, the pitcher that did not sign with the Atlanta Braves after the 2018 draft, but decided to head to Japan to join the SoftBank Hawks.
Stewart was considered one of the top prospects for the 2018 Major League Baseball draft, and was drafted by the Atlanta Braves with the eighth overall pick. Due to a wrist injury, Atlanta offered a signing bonus below the full value of the draft slot and as a result, Stewart did not sign with the Braves and opted for the SoftBank Hawks.
Since his arrival in Japan in 2018, Stewart Jr. has never been called up by the reigning Japanese champion. In all those years he played at the Ni-Gun team of the Hawks.
But now with Shota Takeda out for a long time, the Hawks decided to give Carter Jr. a shot.
In 2019-2020 season, Stewart pitched in the Western League (Ni-Gun or minor league of the NPB) and pitched in informal matches against Shikoku Island League Plus’s teams, one of the premier independent leagues in Japan.
Likely, he will be used as a middle man by the Hawks but with another starting pitcher out due to an injury, Kodai Senga, he may be pushed to a starting role as well.