Major League Baseball teams hoping to sign star pitcher Masahiro Tanaka may be disappointed should his team, the Rakuten Golden Eagles decide to keep the right-handed pitcher and not post him. Ken Belson of The New York Times has reported that while Tanaka is eager to “test his abilities in Major League Baseball next season,” the Eagles are very keen to keep the baseball superstar at home.
Dylan Hernandez of the Los Angeles Times, however, explained that Tanaka’s move to the MLB is not a closed door and has taken to his Twitter to explain that while Tanaka has signified his interest to move to the MLB, the management will have to talk to him about his decision and would probably take some time before they can reach a resolution. Speculation that the Rakuten Eagles management is not eager to post Tanaka is due to the new posting system which has put a cap of $20 million on the posting fee, less than half the $51 million amount the Boston Red Sox paid for Daisuke Matsuzaka or the $51.7 million paid for Yu Darvish by the Texas Rangers.
While it seems that holding on to Tanaka for one more season would be the wrong end of the deal for the Eagles who would not profit from Tanaka after this season, saving money in terms of fan interest may be keeping them from selling him. Rumors that the Eagle’s management is willing to double or even triple Tanaka’s $4 million salary in case they decide to not post him are already circulating. Tanaka’s record 24-0 campaign along with his 1.27 ERA is enough to spark the interest of MLB teams such as The New York Yankees, Texas Rangers and Los Angeles Angels and would be really disappointing for them if the Eagles decide to keep their star pitcher after all.
[via Bleacher Report]