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The New York Yankees have already made a splash this offseason with big deals and that continued Wednesday morning with the signing of Japanese ace Masahiro Tanaka. The team reportedly reached a seven-year, $155 million deal with the star right-hander.
The deal does include an opt-out after Tanaka’s fourth year with the team. FOX Sports’ Ken Rosenthal first reported the news.
Tanaka is only 25 and had a stellar season with the Tohoku Rakuten Golden Eagles, which won the Japan Series championship. According to the New York Times, he had a 24-0 record and a 1.27 earned run average for the season. His split-finger fastball impressed the major leagues, as has his competitive nature.
Other teams that reportedly offered Tanaka a deal in the $100 million area were the Los Angeles Dodgers, Chicago Cubs,Chicago White Sox and Arizona Diamondbacks. Teams had until Friday at 5 p.m. to negotiate.
USA Today reports that the deal comes just days after the team was freed of $25 million when Alex Rodriguez was suspended for the entire 2014 season. The Yankees, who did not make the playoffs last season and struggled at the plate, also added Jacoby Ellsbury, Carlos Beltran and Brian McCann this offseason.
Tanaka’s contract with the Yankees is the fourth-highest for a pitcher in MLB history.
image: Wikimedia Commons