According to Fox Sports.com senior baseball writer Ken Rosenthal, the New York Yankees have signed Masahiro Tanaka to a seven year, $155 million deal. Tanaka became the top free agent pitcher in baseball after the Japanese star was made available earlier this offseason via the posting system.
Tanaka is the first Japanese player to sign with a MLB team under the league's new posting system, which was agreed upon in December. Under the new system any MLB team willing to pay the fee set by Nippon Professional Baseball can negotiate with the player. Under the new system NPB can't set the posting fee higher than $20 million.
After being posted, Tanaka immediately became the top free agent in baseball. At just 25-years-old Tanaka has the potential to be a top-of-the-rotation starter. Over the last three years in NPB, Tanaka went 53-9 with a 1.44 ERA. According to Rosenthal, Tanaka can opt-out of his deal with the Yankees after the fourth year. This deal makes Tanaka becomes the fifth highest paid pitcher in baseball. With the $20 million spent as a part of the posting fee, the Yankees are spending a total of $175 million on Tanaka.
BREAKING: Tanaka to #Yankees, seven years, $155M, opt-out after fourth year.— Ken Rosenthal (@Ken_Rosenthal) January 22, 2014
Photo Credit: Getty Images/Koji Watanabe