Littoral Combat Ships (LCS)


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I think we have too different a conception of the future battlefield.
I actually go by official ones. Being simple is helpful ;p
I see the Japanese Navy as too busy trying to defend the Japanese Home Islands, to have spare capacity for trans-Pacific convoying.
Naval warfare doesn't rely on building "walls of ships", on a material level.
This is not land warfare, it's both hard to achieve and pointless at the same time - naval warfare isn't static.

Assets intended to defend Home Islands either don't conflict with escorting ones, or can reasonably perform both functions (for example, JMSDF MPAs) - and, frankly speaking, Japan has plenty of them.

And before the LCS has the opportunity to operate near Chinese shores, at a minimum, I would expect China to have already conducted high-altitude nuclear detonations over Japan or the Pacific.
Offtop: I don't like nuclear warfare entusiasts. Most of them think of what they can do to "them". Fewer think about what will happen if anyone will reply. And, as we know from Caribbean crisis, they only remember about their own families when bombers are already on high alert.
It's important to remember about nuclear weapons, but aim of the military - superpower military especially so - shall be in ability to attain its goals without going up the nuclear ladder.
It's especially true for China, which is by far the most vulnerable to any sort of nuclear warfare (and even non-nuclear strategic strikes are meh). It's simply against its interest - especially in a conflict, which is very much winnable as things stand right now.
And also remember that only 1 island really matters to China - which is Taiwan. China could lose every other island in the Western Pacific, but still legitimately have a huge strategic victory if it has Taiwan. Therefore all the littoral operations in other islands is secondary.
Taiwan is a political goal. While political limits on warfare are a nice thing (no sarcasm here), sometimes it may make things almost unachievable.
In particular, while taking of Taiwan without isolating(blockading) it is possible - it's the least desirable way not only militarily, but politically too (best course scenario is Crimea-style fait accompli).