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MacLane to defect to Japan?

A report out of Japan predicts that Cardinals farmhand Evan MacLane will leave the St. Louis system to sign with Orix of the Japanese majors.

MacLane, who turned 28 in November, was 8-7 with a 4.45 ERA for Class AAA Memphis in 2010. It was the lefty's second season in the Cardinals system. He was 8-9 with a 3.75 ERA for the Redbirds in 2009.

I can see why MacLane wants to take the chance to be a starter in the Japanese majors. He's nowhere close to cracking an MLB rotation with a long history of giving up quite a few more hits than innings pitched.

Prior to his time in the St. Louis system, MacLane has pitched in the Mets and Diamondbacks systems. He's 69-54 with a 4.23 ERA in Class AAA and 40-41 with a 4.88 ERA in Class AA ball.

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