Yankees Give Masahiro Tanaka 155 Reasons To Come To The Bronx
After months of speculating where the prized pitching sensation from Japan would land, we now have our answer. Much to the chagrin of the baseball world the New York Yankees have signed Masahiro Tanaka to a 7 year/$155 million deal with an opt out clause after the fourth season. The Yankees once again flexed their financial muscle inking Tanaka to a deal that morphs the contract Yu Darvish received from the Texas Rangers in 2012.
Selfishly, as a Blue Jays fan I wish Tanaka would have signed in the National League but you have to give the Yankees brain trust credit, they set their sights on a goal and put their money where their mouth, negotiating and bullying their way to Tanaka with the good ol’ American dollar. $155 million of them to be exact.
So now we all can sit back and wait to see if the hurler can live up to the lofty expectations and the even loftier contract he is owed. You have to wonder if the Yankees planned ahead re-signing veteran pitcher Hiroki Kuroda to a one-year deal for the upcoming 2014 season. The native of Osaka, Japan will not only be a valuable asset on the field but off as well mentoring Tanaka and assisting him with the transition to life in the pressure cooker of New York.
The conclusion of the Tanaka soap opera will undoubtedly open up the flood gates for the likes of the remaining free agent hurlers who were stalled by the Tanaka talks. Ervin Santana and company must be licking their chops after seeing the 155 beside Tanaka’s name, they all look like bargains at 80 million now. Well, not really.
So there you have it, Tanaka is bound for New York just when you thought there may be a new MLB bully in town from the west coast. The old playground bully resurfaces asserting themselves as the off-season free spender of old. Somewhere George Steinbrenner is smiling.