The New York Yankees finally presented the latest addition to their team, Japanese right-hander Masahiro Tanaka. The latest high-priced acquisition from the Nippon Baseball League came all the way from Tokyo after chartering a Boeing 787 Dreamliner to fly him in time for the press conference and spring training camp of the Yankees.
Unlike other players, the 25-year old Tanaka was presented in the Legends Suite Club, the exclusive place where high rollers gather during season and not in the news conference room at the Yankee Stadium. Attending the press conference were around 200 media people from all over the world. Donning his new pinstripe jersey with No. 19, the former NPB player introduced himself, “Hello. My name is Masahiro Tanaka. I’m very happy to be a Yankee.”
Yankees’ Managing general partner Hal Steinbrenner expressed no regret in getting Tanaka even if they had to go beyond the $189 million luxury tax threshold they have set. “We needed another starter, and when we do things, we try to do them right. And this guy, he’s tough. He’s got tremendous ability. We all know that. And he’s going to be very exciting to watch,” said Steinbrenner. He also added that Tanaka is “going to be great for the team, a great teammate. And $189 (million) or not, we wanted a good quality starter, and we got it.”
[via The Republic]