So how about a scouting report? As we do with all NPB pitchers, the first step is to look at their NPB Tracker data. Even as a reliever, his fastball is well below average, averaging just 87.79 MPH in 2010. Here is a complete list of MLB right-handed relievers that threw at least 20 innings with fastballs worse than Kobayashi's: Livan Hernandez, Shawn Camp. Camp had a surprisingly good 2012 despite being originally cut out of Spring Training. Livan was terrible and his career looks over. Even sidearmers like Cody Eppley and Darren O'Day threw harder than Kobayashi. Kobayashi isn't a sidearmer, and instead has what you would call a pretty standard NPB delivery. He has a slight hesitation (though not quite a pause. He never really stops, he just glitches for a split second) along with a high leg kick before swinging it forward and coming over the top, getting some extension and using his 6-0 175 frame. Here is a great show motion YouTube video that I found of his delivery:
Other than the glove tuck, which seems a little odd and counter intuitive to me, this is a really standard NPB delivery. He seems to have ditched the curve and become more of a changeup heavy pitcher (still throwing his fastball at least half the time), along with some forkballs and sliders that average about 80 MPH each. The slider used to be his put away pitch, as he could get it up to 83 to 84 MPH and it had some sharp downward movement. It is not quite a traditional slider (there is very little to no horizontal movement, it usually just darts down on the glove side of the plate), and it appears that, since he has lost the velocity on it, he is going to it less. The change stays more arm side, and at least was (though data suggests not so much anymore) is a little softer. Other than that, there isn't a lot of difference in break.
While we have seen some pitchers from Japan, especially out of the pen, come to the States and succeed with below average velocity, Kobayashi has a lot to overcome. The loss of velocity across the board is concerning when it comes to his breaking pitches, especially since they don't break like traditional MLB breaking pitches anyway. It is really hard to see him making an impact for the Angels, or even deserving a 25 man roster spot (which I guess is the definition of a minor league contract anyway).