Masahiro Tanaka Rumors: Sunday

Earlier today, we learned the Cubs are prepared to offer Masahiro Tanaka a nine-figure contract and a National League GM expects one team will "come in and blow everyone away." Here's the latest on the top ranked player on MLBTR's 2014 Top 50 Free Agents list still on the market:

  • The level of the Dodgers' aggressiveness in pursuing in Tanaka may be defined by the progress, or lack thereof, in extension talks with Clayton Kershaw, according to ESPN's Buster Olney (Insider subscription required). 
  • The Blue Jays have scouted Tanaka, but their reluctance to offer players seven-year contracts make it unlikely the prized right-hander will sign with Toronto, writes Bob Elliott of the Toronto Sun.
  • Also within Elliott's article, a source provides this scouting report on Tanaka: "Plenty of great Japanese hitters say his four-seam fastball and splitter are indistinguishable. His regular season was outstanding: 95-96 mph, four-seam fastball, location was great, velocity was great and an unhittable splitter, along with a hard slider."
  • Elliott's source also outlined what Tanaka will be seeking from potential suitors. "Tanaka wants to go to a World Series, wants a city where his family will feel at home since they don’t speak English. He has a desire to be on a team with potential to win and loves the pressure."


171 Responses to Masahiro Tanaka Rumors: Sunday Leave a Reply

  1. ProjectNeo 2 years ago

    Did anyone think he was going to make less then 100 million? I’d be suprised if Tanaka gets less then 120 million frankly.

    • Jack Conness 2 years ago

      Yeah, there is nothing special about the Cubs offering him a nine-figure deal. I suppose there will be about five other teams doing the same thing.

    • Runtime 2 years ago

      I’m guessing between $110m – $130m

      • Riaaaaaa 2 years ago

        I’m going with 7/140

        • Harrisonc27 2 years ago

          Everybody he stated in a press conference that his three preferred cities are New York, Los Angeles, or Boston but Boston is most likely out

          • Riaaaaaa 2 years ago

            When? I’ve heard this but not that it was stated in a press conference…

          • Harrisonc27 2 years ago

            Sorry meant to the press not press conference

  2. Ryan J 2 years ago

    It’s understandable that he wants to go to a contender, but he’s 25. He still has plenty of years in the tank and he could very easily get numerous chances to be on a contender in the future. That said, he should not be so quick to narrow his list to contenders for this year, because there are other factors that should be looked into beyond that. I’m glad that my Cubs are supposedly out of the running for him because I don’t want a selfish guy who hasn’t even proven himself in the MLB to get a 20mm upwards payday each season if he flames out or doesn’t live up to the hype.

    • meinhardt1992 2 years ago

      where did it say the cubs were out of it?

      • Ryan J 2 years ago

        I saw it on Yahoo Sports. Article published today.

      • Riaaaaaa 2 years ago

        Apparently Tanaka narrowed his choices down to the Yankees Dodgers and Angels with the Yankees being the favorites. Dylan Hernandez translated the article by Sports Hochi in Japan but he also said to take it with a “grain of salt” considering they have a track record of being wrong

        • Ryan J 2 years ago

          Thanks, I know how to read too.

          • Riaaaaaa 2 years ago

            I said that because it doesn’t mean it’s true. They were the same people who claimed he wouldn’t be posted.

          • Ryan J 2 years ago

            Reports change. I’m not convinced that the Cubs had a chance to begin with, that’s why I said that they are out of it.

          • Pingston 2 years ago

            Remember, his agents have a big influence, and they get a percentage of his contract which also influences them. I’d be very surprised to see the biggest dollar amount — or dollars plus peripherals such as condos, farmhouse, multiple air fares to Japan, etc. — not being the big decider.

      • Douglas Bath 2 years ago

        “where did it say the cubs were out of it?”
        where it said he wants to go to a world series.

    • Riaaaaaa 2 years ago

      If you were in his situation why would you want to go to a team in the rebuilding phase for less money, when you could make more money and go to a contender? That’s not being selfish.

      • meinhardt1992 2 years ago

        What are you talking about the cubs would offer him a huge contract and make him the center piece of the process. Not only that but the key parts should be up in the big leagues in the next year or two. By 2015 or 2016 the cubs will be ready for contention

        • Riaaaaaa 2 years ago

          Everyone is going to offer a huge contract to him but my point is that he is calling him selfish for wanting to go to a team that can win now. Why would he want to take less money?

          • Jun Kim 2 years ago

            Maria how is he going to take less money if he is going to the cubs when they offered 9 figures? Seriously. Although the Yankees, and the Dodgers are sharing the spot light for the Tanaka sweepstakes I believe the Seattle Mariners are the Dark Horse and the up most favorites to get his services. By joining the Mariners he will able to reunite with his former teammate Iwakuma and with the new TV deal they can offer just as much if not more than the Yankees or Dodgers, the Mariners are an up and coming team and proved to the league that they want to win by signing the best free agent in this class in Robinson Cano one of the best 2nd base man in all of Major League base ball, and lastly Seattle if not has the largest Japanese Fan Base in all of MLB.

        • Jake 2 years ago

          The Cubs have been saying that for a hundred years…

        • LazerTown 2 years ago

          But the Yankees and the Dodgers have a much better track record of doing what it takes to put together a contender.

          • Pingston 2 years ago

            How many times have the Dodgers been a contender in last 25 years? They are currently being resurrected from middle of the pack slumber.

          • LazerTown 2 years ago

            Dodgers have a very good team right now, not just a team that could sneak in. The cubs have been shorting money currently, the Dodgers have shown that they are willing to spend to win. Dodgers were middle of pack before sure, but new ownership has turned that around within a couple of years to make the place a very desirable free agent destination.

      • Ryan J 2 years ago

        I’m saying that it’s selfish because he isn’t looking at the big picture and it perceiving himself as a veteran star with only a few years left to play. He is 25 with no track record in MLB.

        • livestrong77nyyankz 2 years ago

          You’re saying he is selfish because he isn’t looking at your view of things.

        • Riaaaaaa 2 years ago

          Okay but in my personal opinion. If I were him I’d do the same thing. It is no guarantee that the Cubs prospects will pan out for them to be contenders. Why would I waste my time knowing 2014 will be a losing season?

          • Ryan J 2 years ago

            You’re definitely right. But let’s say the prospects don’t all turn out and the Cubs are still a losing team. Just because they are a losing team, they still will eventually get a new TV deal, Renovation revenue from advertisements, and a payroll that is among the lowest. If things don’t work out, they will have a lot of money to spend and I think that eventually money will be spent.
            Basically, just because they aren’t good now and have a low payroll doesn’t make them a small market team. They are still very much a big market team, just not in terms of payroll. Why pay 100MM+ to a 31 year old FA when they aren’t contending? Tanaka would be a future investment, which he doesn’t want to be.

        • Riaaaaaa 2 years ago

          It’s also an insurance thing in a way. Who knows if he flops in MLB and can’t get another contract in FA, his hopes of being on a contending team and winning a WS are gone.

          • Ryan J 2 years ago

            Well if he flops he’s still making 20MM a year for being so. That’s why. If he flops, no team is going to want to pay that much and if he is on a contender where games matter and he struggles in his first year, there is going to be a whole lot of criticism. No denying that.

          • johnsilver 2 years ago

            Friendly advice? Drop it..

      • docmilo5 2 years ago

        Rebuilding vs contending? The Yankees and Angels have their flaws. The Yankees are old, missed the playoffs and have no minor league system to maintain a contender. The Angels are in the same boat. Pujols isn’t what he once was, Hamilton can’t hit lefties and is older than his age.
        The Yankees are counting on Ellsbury, Beltran and McCann who have all missed significant time due to injury. CC may be a middle of the rotation pitcher now that he lost a few ticks of the fastball.

        • johnsilver 2 years ago

          That is a point. Correct me if wrong, but Anaheim was recently ranked 30th amongst organizations for Minor league organizations for system strength and I think the NYY were 16-17th.

          • Riaaaaaa 2 years ago

            The yankees farm was also ranked slightly higher than the dodgers

          • docmilo5 2 years ago

            I have no clue how the Yankees have a better system than the Dodgers. Pederson and Lee could be up this year and the Yankees have nothing like those 2 anywhere in their system. The Yankees’ #2 per MLB.com hit .248/.304/.337 with 4 homers in 117 games last year. Joc Pederson he is not.
            The Cubs would be a good choice in 2 years if those kids make it up. That’s why I think the M’s would be a good fit, they have the kids at the MLB level already in Seager, Zunino, Miller, Franklin, Ackley and to a lesser extent Smoak and Saunders. They have young arms in Felix (still not yet 28) and Paxton, Walker, Ramirez and Maurer with Pike, Diaz, Sanchez, Peterson, Hultzen and Taylor right behind all that. The M’s farm is loaded.
            I would like to have heard the talks between Iwakuma and Tanaka this winter. Then again, Darvish could be just as big an influence for the Rangers.

        • LazerTown 2 years ago

          People have been saying this about the Yankees for years. Sure they were a disaster this year, but nobody has a better track record of putting together contenders. The have only missed what, 2 playoffs in 20+ years, that should have a much bigger influence on him than this years stats, when he is signing for 7 years.

          • docmilo5 2 years ago

            Things are just changing. A lot of teams have more money to compete with the Yankees. The Yankees just haven’t done enough to deal with the loss of Mo and Pettit and the aging of Jeter, Tex and A-Rod.
            Edit: and the compensation for FAs is changing, too. Boston and the Yankees used to get a lot of comp picks for the aged vets they signed short term and let go. It’s harder to rebuild the farm when you aren’t getting 3 or 4 extra picks a year.

          • LazerTown 2 years ago

            Ellsbury, Tanaka, Beltran, McCann wouldn’t be able to replace?

            And I don’t remember the Yankees and Sox getting a ton of comp picks. I remember the Rays doing that with relievers
            2013 was the first time since 2008 that the Yankees had 2 picks in the first round (includes sandwich)

            7 years is a long time to sign for, and I can almost guarantee that the Yankees will be near the top in wins over that timeframe.

          • docmilo5 2 years ago

            link to newyork.yankees.mlb.com
            2004 and 2001 they had 3 first rounders. 2006 they had a comp pick. No, they didn’t have as many as the Rays did a couple of years ago, that was crazy. But it doesn’t hurt if you get an extra pick or two every year or three consistently. 2013 the Yanks had 3 1st rounders, 2012 they had 2 2nd rounders. It all adds up. They don’t get that anymore.

          • TheRealRyan 2 years ago

            You do realize that 2013 was the new draft and qualifying offer system right? The Yankees had the extra picks in 2013 because Nick Swisher and Rafael Soriano turned down their qualifying offers.

          • slider32 2 years ago

            They were in the hunt most of the season even with every on the team getting hurt. They won 85 games last year and have over hauled the team. They will be playoff contenders with the improvements they have make, if they land Tanaka and Balfour they will be the favorites

        • MB923 2 years ago

          You do a lot of smack talking as a fan of a team that hasn’t made the playoffs in 12 years.

          • docmilo5 2 years ago

            If there is an issue with something I say, refute it. I’m willing to change my mind.

            I don’t insult people, I don’t say bad things to people. I don’t call people names. I love the game and like to talk about it. Smack talk? I don’t see any smack talk going on in this thread. A couple of questions, a couple of opinions, that’s about it.

    • John Cate 2 years ago

      He’s 25, but the way he’s been used in Japan, his arm might not be. A lot of Japanese pitchers have gotten hurt or fallen off badly after a few seasons in MLB.

    • Mikel Grady 2 years ago

      As a cub fan I want(ed) him but if it goes to stupid money and years let someone else have him.
      With the miles on his arm and pitchers are always one pitch away from tommy john surgery no thanks. I think it will go 150-160 for 7 yrs. 24-0 in Japan big deal. Not like he is facing murders row every night.

      • Pingston 2 years ago

        I think you’re right, money-wise. Any team that signs him will pull a lot of ticket sales for at least this year. But while no murderers row in Japan, he is given the ultimate chance to hone the pitches while periodically testing them against better than AAA bats. To me, that makes him worth a roll of the dice. That’s while he’ll pull that money. It could be a Cubs who have lots of payroll room, or another team who can make a great pitch. Blue Jays, for example, have lots of upside, especially from last year. A more multicultural city than any contender in US, LOTS of money, and real potential to go places with bats and gloves in 2014, and in the future, with prospects in the pipeline and money in the vault.

  3. meinhardt1992 2 years ago

    Tanaka will no doubt make 100 million+, I just hope the Cubs get him. They may not be contending this year but in the following years they will have the core set in with him being the center of a rotation.

    • Ryan J 2 years ago

      He is supposedly not interested in pitching for the Cubs. Reports say he has narrowed his list to the Yankees, Dodgers, and Angels. Not like I didn’t see this coming.

      • meinhardt1992 2 years ago

        The only source that i have seen that was remotely close to saying that was where he said that he would prefer to play in LA, New York or Boston. That does not mean that he will not go for an offer if it offers him what he wants

        • Ryan J 2 years ago

          The Cubs have the ability to make him a very rich man, which is especially convincing for him to the fact that he is inexperienced in the MLB. They could offer him the top dollar, but it doesn’t matter because there is a perception that the Cubs are way farther away from contending than they actually are. What has to be understood is that the Cubs still have plenty of money, and if this rebuilding thing doesn’t work out they can still go back to their old ways if they please. Not that I think they should be like the Dodgers or Yankees, but I’m saying that they very much can operate like them if they want to.

          • YARRitsBLAKE 2 years ago

            From what I’ve seen though, the Cubs’ new ownership isn’t interested in spending as much as the previous ownership of the club. Given that, I doubt the Cubs, whose payroll currently sits at what, the $75 million range, will be able to have payroll figures similar to the Yankees or Dodgers at this point. I am not aware as to whether or not they have a TV deal like the Dodgers recently signed, but if so, they need to exploit it.

            Bottom line, I do not believe the Cubs stand a chance right now against the money and leverage the Dodgers or Yankees have in a situation like this.

          • Ryan J 2 years ago

            That’s what I’m saying. I don’t care where he goes ,as I am a Cubs and Dodgers fan, so he could land on either team. The Cubs’ ownership has been reluctant to spend, but why would they right now? I think that 90 loss seasons aren’t going to be tolerated much longer before ownership is forced to make a move beyond rebuilding.

      • BK 2 years ago

        It moderates my comment, but the story broke 2 hours ago. Google “Tanaka Narrows List.”

  4. The Coach 2 years ago

    Sounds like Orange County would be the perfect fit for Tanaka….Halos!!! @TheeHaloWay

    • Anthony Hughes 2 years ago

      The Dodgers just seem like the far better option to win, so to me, the Angels’ offer would have to be significantly higher for him to choose Anaheim over LA. But I don’t discount that possibility.

  5. Jack Conness 2 years ago

    C’mon White Sox! MAKE THIS HAPPEN!

  6. KINGMOJO 2 years ago

    Tanaka is going to L.A whether it be the angels or dodgers. lots of asians, and the best weather. Personally dont care if he signs anywhere else i just want to see him pitch.

    • livestrong77nyyankz 2 years ago

      Only the Japanese population would matter to Tanaka, not whether the state or city he would reside in would have “lots of asians.” -_-

      -Now the largest Japanese American communities were found in California with 272,528, Hawaii with 185,502, New York with 37,780, Washington with 35,008, Illinois with 17,542, and Ohio with 16,995. Southern California has the largest Japanese-American population in North America.

      • BlueSkyLA
        BlueSkyLA 2 years ago

        Thats’s a little deceptive too since those numbers would include not just foreign born, but also a lot of Nisei and Sansei, and plenty of later generations.

        • livestrong77nyyankz 2 years ago

          Right, which is why it simple has numbers on the Japenese-American communities, which is what I wanted to present.

    • Lee Ferguson 2 years ago

      Toronto has a pretty large Asian population accounting for almost 29% of the total population.whereas Los Angeles comes in at 26%. Not that I believe Tanaka will land in Toronto but if it’s comfort for his family and a chance to win, the Jays are probably better suited than most teams according to his ‘checklist’.

      • thefridge99 2 years ago

        I doubt he speaks Mandarin or Filipino so Toronto’s Asian population is likely irrelevant to him.

        • BadBJay 2 years ago

          You are correct. This Japanese fan base point is so irrelevant. Wherever he goes, Japanese TV will follow him. It’s probably the furthest thing on his mind right now. It’s as if he’s going to hang around with fans all day.

          • ice_hawk10 2 years ago

            Yeah I think so too. He’s gonna be surrounded by countrymen no matter where he goes. I think the chance to win thing matters, but otherwise I think he’ll just follow the money.

        • northsfbay 2 years ago

          Filipinos speak Tagalog.

        • Luigi Vampa 2 years ago

          Well according to the 2011 census the Japanese population of the Greater Toronto Area is just over 20000 and the Ontario population is just over 29000. Its probably gone up since then but none of this really matters. The guy is going to go where the money is… as he should.

          • Pingston 2 years ago

            Well, he is most likely to go where his agents advise him to go, and they will have weighed all of these factors. One intangible factor is how well Toronto embraced Munenori Kawasaki in 2013. That would matter to me. The Blue Jays re-signed Kawasaki — whose child was born in Toronto — and could commit to Tanaka to have Muni on the team if he signs. That would make sense in multiple dimensions, and would matter to me if I were Tanaka.

          • Luigi Vampa 2 years ago

            That’s a nice narrative you’ve constructed but the agent will also be directing him to the largest contract. If the top offers were equally then you can start weighing intangibles like that… but there will likely be one team that offers substantially more than anyone else. So moot point!

      • Gnotorious 2 years ago

        29% of Toronto’s population = about 726,000 people.
        26% of Los Angeles population = about 1 million people.

        Not really a comparison. And that doesn’t account for the greater LA area or the fact that LA is a major US destination (and entry point) for Asians in the US.

        Now add how many Asians visit Disney and could take in a game while they are there. Not many MLB cities can compete with that.

  7. Mike 2 years ago

    Come on Texas, go get him.

    • Kyle 2 years ago

      I think the money could be better spent elsewhere (if bidding goes above $125M). Rangers hit on Darvish, but I would be hesitant to pay Tanaka more than Yu, seeing as I’m sure TEX wants to extend him in the not too distant future.

      • Anthony Hughes 2 years ago

        It’s the cost of doing business now. But I do think Texas is in better position for Price and then extending him.

    • Gnotorious 2 years ago

      Texas will land Price.

      • Kyle 2 years ago

        Price would cost Profar, leaving no one to man 2B. Odor is still at least a season away.

  8. Runtime 2 years ago

    Dear Bob,
    Thanks for pointing out issues about the Jays contract restrictions.

    Thanks for also pointing out that the sky is blue.

    I like Bob’s work… but wow. Pointless comments.

  9. bhambravesfan 2 years ago

    I am a Braves fan, I am not delusional in thinking my Braves have a shot at signing him. All I ask is that someone other than the Nationals do. A rotation of Strasburg, Zimmerman, Tanaka, Gio, and Fister would all but gaurentee a division win for the Nats

    • dab394 2 years ago

      I don’t think the Nationals would be able to get in the mix because the price is going to get crazy. I don’t think it makes sense to spend over a 100 million dollars on a player who has never thrown a pitch at the big league level and has a ton of mileage on his arm, but that’s just the nature of how things work these days.

      On an unrelated note, how do you feel about the Braves heading into this season? As a Mets fan, I know a million things would have to break right for them to get into playoff consideration, but the only team I’m really convinced has a chance at the National League pennant in the division is the Nationals. I know the Braves won the division last year, but they strike me as a team that is better than the sum of its parts. And they lost a lot this offseason and haven’t done much to fill in the holes. I am just curious if Braves fans still like the team to beat in the division or if there is apprehension about the coming year.

    • GameMusic3 2 years ago

      Frankly, Strasburg, Zimmerman, Gio, and Fister are probably enough to guarantee a division win depending on DL. Dombrowski should be the Nationals executive of the year.

  10. essmeier 2 years ago

    “Tanaka wants to go to a World Series”

    Kind of rules the Cubs out, doesn’t it? I have to wonder about these players that come over from Japan. Do their agents point out to them that the Cubs haven’t been to the Series since World War II, or that they haven’t won the thing in 105 years?

  11. BadBJay 2 years ago

    The Jays need to just stop dreaming. And the Cubs. Tanaka’s biggest factors will be money, team outlook, and defense. If pitching in front of Japanese is so important, he would stay in Japan.

    • WazBazbo 2 years ago

      Amended to, “…he would stay in Japan if he could make the same amount of money in Japan.” What he’ll make here is significantly more than he was paid in Japan.

  12. SierraM363 2 years ago

    If he really wants to win a World Series it should be either LA or Boston. NY still needs a lot of work with that rotation.

    • Bromacho 2 years ago

      Infield as well.

      • BadBJay 2 years ago

        Infield, bullpen, and then rotation for the yanks… in that order.

        • docmilo5 2 years ago

          Infield? Whatchya mean? A-Rod will be at the hot corner. LOL

          • GrilledCheese39 2 years ago

            I know A-Rod is the best hitter ever! Playing alongside the durable Jeter, Roberts, and Teixeira!

          • txftw 2 years ago

            Wow I did not realize that was the Yanks’ infield (minus A-rod now lol). That’s scary. For Yankees fans.

    • JacobyWanKenobi 2 years ago

      With Tanaka in the rotation, CC, Kuroda, Tanaka, Nova, House option would be very solid provided CC improves. As of right now, there are no valid base points on which to predicate how well CC will do this year. He was coming off of injury last year, so he could very easily return to form in 2014, or he may not, so “a lot of work” is an overstatement.

      • GrilledCheese39 2 years ago

        I don’t know CC will be about 123 in 2104, he may not be alive anymore..

        • BadBJay 2 years ago

          Even if Tanaka signs with the Yanks… and despite Kuroda’s two solid seasons, CC is still the ace in 2014. He’ll be healthier and make adjustments… he’s no fool.

        • JacobyWanKenobi 2 years ago

          Fair play, that was a good one. :) Fixed. Then again, that’d be about the proper age for most Yankee players.

      • Riaaaaaa 2 years ago

        Other than tanaka they need one more bullpen arm and MAYBE an infielder but other than that I agree it really isn’t that much.

        • SierraM363 2 years ago

          “Maybe an infielder?”

          3b – _____

          SS – Jeter

          2b – _____

          1b – Teixiera

          • Bromacho 2 years ago

            Jeter is pretty much a stretch at this point as well

          • SierraM363 2 years ago

            You think so? :)

          • Vmmercan 2 years ago

            Brendan Ryan is already signed for that reason.

          • Riaaaaaa 2 years ago

            Kelly Johnson, Brian Roberts, and a bunch of the other guys they just signed to minor league deals as depth will fill that void

          • JacobyWanKenobi 2 years ago

            I think Kelly Johnson is being overlooked by too many people. There’s a real chance he could provide some decent numbers with that porch.

          • Riaaaaaa 2 years ago

            Exactly. He’s moving from Tropicana Field (which is the fairest park in the division) to Yankee Stadium (a lefties dream) Everyone is trying to downplay the Yankees situation right now as a major disaster when it isn’t. There are only 2 maybe three positions that could use an upgrade, but the offseason isn’t over.

          • Pingston 2 years ago

            Kelly really can’t hit. That’s why the Blue Jays let him go. The Rays grabbed him because they’re cheap. The Yankees grabbed him as cheap defensive insurance. His glove is solid, but not his bat.

          • MB923 2 years ago

            .763 OPS isn’t solid?

          • Bromacho 2 years ago

            You are just being overly optimistic which is fine. But you are wrong.

      • SierraM363 2 years ago

        No valid points to determine how Tanaka would do either. I’ll just have to judge CC, Kuroda, and Nova on how they did last year. If all goes well, Tanaka will replace Pettitte’s production.

        • Riaaaaaa 2 years ago

          You also have to take into consideration the fact that Phil Hughes will be gone. That’s already a huge bonus right there.

        • Vmmercan 2 years ago

          A full and healthy season of an effective Nova will replace Pettitte. A healthy CC will already make the rotation better than last year and an addition of Tanaka would make the rotation at least not an issue considering the improvement to the offense.

          • SierraM363 2 years ago

            If Nova replaces Pettitte who replaces Nova? :)

          • Riaaaaaa 2 years ago

            Tanaka

          • SierraM363 2 years ago

            Here’s what you guys gave me so far.

            (Bad) CC —> (Good) CC
            Kuroda —> Kuroda
            Pettitte —> Nova
            Nova —> Tanaka
            Hughes —> Someone

          • Riaaaaaa 2 years ago

            Warren/Pineda/Phelps/Banuelos etc. but most likely Warren since he proved himself last year.

          • SierraM363 2 years ago

            How many games did Warren start last year?

          • Riaaaaaa 2 years ago

            He started 2 games, and did very well as a long reliever.

          • SierraM363 2 years ago

            It’s hard to say he proved himself if he only started 2 games. Maybe it might be better to say he proved himself as a reliever.

          • Riaaaaaa 2 years ago

            I’d still take him any day over Hughes.

          • SierraM363 2 years ago

            That’s a low bar that Warren has to jump.

          • JacobyWanKenobi 2 years ago

            The subtraction of Hughes from the rotation is better than having two Novas, so Nova – Hughes > Nova + Andy + Hughes.

          • JacobyWanKenobi 2 years ago

            OR Nova^2 < (Nova + Tanaka)-(Hughes x Andy)^3 = Less Runs

          • Vmmercan 2 years ago

            It’s a matter of evaluation. A healthy and adjusted CC replaces Pettitte. An effective Nova replaces a Nova who was ineffective until midseason. Tanaka is an upgrade even with some Kuroda regression in the event his age catches up to him a little bit. Fifth spot has to be at least on par with Hughes, with potential option for upgrade (if say, a healthy Pineda owns it).

  13. northsfbay 2 years ago

    The Dodgers best meet Tanaka’s criteria, but they don’t want to go crazy on the spending.

    • mack22 2 years ago

      LA would do 100 mil, that’s all the Cubs are offering. Tanaka wants a city where his family will feels welcomed, that singles out New York.

  14. Mike McLellan 2 years ago

    C’mon Anthopolous!! He’s 25, give him the 7 years he wants! If this isn’t the exception to the rule, what the heck is? This is what it takes to win! Ask your self Alex, Are you, as a GM, doing whatever it takes to win?

    • TO647 2 years ago

      Even if AA throws the most money at Tanaka, he still has to decide if he wants to play in Toronto period. The bigger markets of NY, LA, or Chicago are where he’ll likely end up. I like to dream too, but after the Darvish disappointment 2 years ago, don’t keep your hopes up again. Expect them to acquire Jimenez or Garza.

      • Mike McLellan 2 years ago

        Obviously, Tanaka chooses his destination. If the Jays bid along with the big teams and Tanaka chooses elsewhere, so be it. At least we tried. But to miss out on a guy like this bcuz of a term disagreement is frustrating.

  15. MadmanTX 2 years ago

    And introducing the Astros as the mystery team to blow all other offers away.

    • mack22 2 years ago

      Did you read the part where Tanaka wants to go to the World Series? Sorry Pal Ur Out!

      • Baseball Realism 2 years ago

        I would downvote you more if I could. Get a sense of humour

  16. Tony Matias 2 years ago

    “Tanaka wants to go to a World Series”

    And the Mariners fans go quiet.

    • SierraM363 2 years ago

      They can negotiate “WS tickets” into his contract.

  17. grabarkewitz 2 years ago

    Another aspect to keep in mind is that Tanaka’s wife, Mai Satoda, is an actress and singer and she has expressed a desire to continue in that vein on this side of the Pacific. That could give the advantage to the Dodgers and Angels if all other things are equal.

    The other advantage I see is that if he signs with the Dodgers he will not have to be the savior, he is likely going to be either a 3 or 4 in that rotation. In the other contenders for him rotations he will either have to be the ace or number two, although looking at Sabathia’s downturn, he will be the ace just not in name. While I have to think he could handle the pressure, one never knows.

    • Riaaaaaa 2 years ago

      His wife could also be in the spotlight in New York City, not just LA. If he “loves pressure” I’m sure he would love to be the ace or number 2 starter in a rotation.

      • BlueSkyLA
        BlueSkyLA 2 years ago

        I know we are all just reading the sencha leaves here, but for whatever it is worth, LA is still the center of the film, TV, and music businesses.

        • ice_hawk10 2 years ago

          I’m sure they’ll be able to afford the cross country flights.

    • Pingston 2 years ago

      Toronto is a major music, TV and film production centre. The Blue Jays owners are huge TV and radio owners and could guarantee connections countrywide.

  18. Shane Flannagan 2 years ago

    Despite a recent article by a guy who has no clue what he is talking about (Passon) I believe the Cubs are going to be right there at the top with the most money offered to Tanaka. One thing that will hurt the Cubs the most will be being able to talk Tanaka into coming to the Cubs knowing that at least this year wont be so great and might be able to compete starting in 2015.

  19. northsfbay 2 years ago

    According to reports. Tanaka has narrowed his choices to Yankees, Dodgers, Angels with the Yankees in the lead.

    • Shane Flannagan 2 years ago

      I don’t believe in the reports because why would he do that? Leave as many teams in it and just drives the price up

  20. Matt 2 years ago

    The blue jays front office is a joke!! I never hear any other teams saying they wont go over 5 years on a contract, prob cause saying that takes you out of the running for ALL top free agents. Until AA and this policy are gone they will never sign a top free agent

    • Pingston 2 years ago

      Every long contract has been a fiasco for almost every team (think Romero, Wells, Pujols, etc.). You don’t know what the Blue Jays actually say to agents in special situations. Take a pill.

      • Cubstein 2 years ago

        While mostly true, most of those signings were done with players at or near their 30’s. Tanaka will just have turned 25 going into the season. Another similar contract to this would be ARod’s first contract. That contract went about as well as could be hoped. (Obviously the 2nd isn’t as great but again the 2nd was made into his 30’s.

    • ice_hawk10 2 years ago

      Never understood this line of thinking. First off there are many team who operate under a similar inability to attract big name free agents, whether a self imposed policy or not. Second, there are teams that have success despite those limitations. Third, you probably haven’t been paying attention, but indications from AA are that the mythical 5 year policy might be just that: a myth. It can be broken for the right player.

      Look, they probably won’t sign Tanaka for reasons that mainly include the Yankees and the Dodgers, but they will sign a quality SP and they do stand to have a good season. They project better than the Orioles, who are very weak at 2B, LF, RF and DH and have a very mediocre rotation. They also project better than the Yankees, who are a mess in the infield and shaky in the rotation too (barring a Tanaka signing). The Rays are currently better than the Jays, and it would be an extreme long shot to finish ahead of the Red Sox, but a David Price trade will further change the complexion of the division and bring the Jays closer to contention. They are not out of the playoff picture by any means.

      • Matt 2 years ago

        This is AA 5th year running the ship, and his biggest free agent contract is 3 years and 9 million to izturis or a 2 year 16 million to Cabrera and up until he signed them it was cordero for 1 year 4.5m . He publicly states that he thinks the best way to build a team is through trades. We now have a depleted farm system and a team that only has reyes signed through 2015/2016. I know if we add 2 starting pictures and upgrade 2b because we have little to no depth at middle infielder we could contend in the al east but as of now I see them 3rd or 4th. Goins needs another year in aaa to figure out his bat, we also need a platoon bench player because as we all know lind cant hit leftys!! and seeing if he will figure it out is getting old!

    • JamieFC 2 years ago

      Yes because it is Anthopolous who makes these policies. What I think you mean is until the Blue Jays change ownership, they will never sign a top tier free agent. I think 13 years is enough of Rogers…

  21. Zak A 2 years ago

    Man, this has BUST written all over it. I hope for his sake he actually plays well.

  22. Dan Webb 2 years ago

    6 years 120 million minimum is what I expect.

    • Baseball Realism 2 years ago

      Did you come up with that on your own or did you read every article about Tanaka ?

      • Dan Webb 2 years ago

        I didn’t read every article. But the ones I saw and reports on TV suggest that is about what he’ll get.

  23. Douglas Bath 2 years ago

    if he wants to win and wants his Japanese speaking family to feel at home… tell me again why he is leaving his championship team in Japan.

    • Ace Simmons 2 years ago

      I don’t know Tanaka. I am guessing he is leaving to compete in the big leagues and make $120,000,000.

      • Douglas Bath 2 years ago

        “wants a city where his family will feel at home since they don’t speak English. He has a desire to be on a team with potential to win and loves the pressure.”

        • Baseball Realism 2 years ago

          You do know there are more than just English people living in cities throughout North America right ?

          • Douglas Bath 2 years ago

            You do know that less than 0.1% of Americans are fluent in Japanese right?

  24. Ace Simmons 2 years ago

    This Kershaw thing is driving me nuts. I’m pretty confident the Dodgers have given him some crazy offers, but from the reports it appears he wants to try out Free Agency. Colletti needs to have a heart to heart talk with Clayton. If the guy wants to bolt, the Dodgers should go all out on Tanaka and trade Kershaw for a boat load of prospects. I hate to say it. I love the guy. But if he is going to walk, the Dodgers need to get something out of it.

    • BlueSkyLA
      BlueSkyLA 2 years ago

      I don’t get the message that he wants to go to free agency, but the fact is, the Dodgers know and Kershaw knows how much he’d be worth on the open market. The message I’m hearing is that the Dodgers are not getting a discount for his services. Trust me, the Dodgers would far prefer to be trading Billingsley in July.

  25. StarLord Vader 2 years ago

    The Jays “reluctance to offer players seven-year contracts make it unlikely”…. that they will ever sign a decent free agent or ever compete in the AL East! Being a Toronto sports fan is so painful. These Toronto GMs that want to play by their own rules (AA, Brian Burke) never win. AA is showing that he is truly JP’s apprentice

    • Governator88 2 years ago

      Why don’t people understand that attracting free agents to Toronto is difficult, and there are many more factors then just the length of contracts. Try convincing an American star baseball player to move to a new country, pay higher taxes, deal with customs, different laws, cold weather, and if you’re a pitcher you have to deal with a homerun hitters ballpark. Hence why trading is much easier.

      • StarLord Vader 2 years ago

        I understand that some free agents will never come to Toronto. Even more of a reason to offer more term and $. I guess we will never know because AA doesn’t sign anyone. The problem the Jays have now is that they have given up a lot of prospects… many of which they could have kept if they originally SIGNED Reyes/Buerle. They have upped their budget, might as welll go all in and go for it now.

        • Matt 2 years ago

          we sure did give up a lot to get two guys that were free agents the year before, maybe AA should take a lesion from Miami, sign quality free agents and trade them next year to restock our farm system

          • Governator88 2 years ago

            Considering most Toronto senior citizens want to retire in Florida, it’s got to be 10x easier to convince a free agent to sign there. I do agree that perhaps the only way to convince some free agents to come to Toronto is to spend more money and AA has not gambled there (judge that however you want).

            In an ideal world they would just keep their prospects pool and build a winner within like Tampa or Oakland. Then spend their bucks to keep the game changers long term where those small market teams have to sell.

          • StarLord Vader 2 years ago

            They have been building that winner since ’93. Maybe they should bring in Pat Gillick

          • Mike McLellan 2 years ago

            How many COLD months of the year do the players actually spend in Toronto? Answer – NONE! I dont think the weather plays a big factor. Its all about money and term.

        • JamieFC 2 years ago

          You seem to be under the perception that Anothopolous is free to act as he pleases. You make it seem that Rogers and Paul Beeston have nothing to do with the Jays’ contractual policies.

          • StarLord Vader 2 years ago

            I’m under the perception that GMs are supposed to sign a free agent once or twice a decade. If Rogers won’t let him sign players (and he is always saying Rogers will make funds available) to longer term deals, then I guess the Jays will never win another championship. Last time I checked teams sign players to contracts, AA is naive if he thinks he can win in the east without FAs. They need a couple FA starters this year or they dont make the playoffs as is

          • JamieFC 2 years ago

            I agree that they need two FA starters to compete – hopefully Ubaldo and Ervin. However, I don’t think that AA actually thinks he can win the East without signing at least one FA starter.

          • StarLord Vader 2 years ago

            I don’t know but a few weeks ago he was talking about “in house options”. I’m sorry but that is loser talk. Look I’m hoping this all works out this season but therw are just a million ifs. Standing pat should not be an option but it wouldn’t suprise me. How are the raps the best TO team right now?

      • Matt 2 years ago

        It may be easier than paying extra to get quality free agents but its not smarter. Free agents come at a price but unless your picking up some one who has been qualified you don’t have to give up anyting else. Elite teams build there team with free agents and don’t fill one hole by making another

      • StarLord Vader 2 years ago

        The BJs have often compensated players to account for taxes and the weather is exactly the same as Chicago, NY, Bos, Det, etc. Yes its cold in the winter, just like the cities I just named. Toronto is a world class city with great culture, nightlife, food, luxury condos/homes. Some people are unfortunately ignorant of Toronto and Canada in general. Ask any of the stars who have played here in any sport and they will tell you how great it is. Prince Fielder grew up here and from what I heard was willing to play here.

      • StarLord Vader 2 years ago

        In the early 90s the Jays attracted the top players in the game, if they start competing they can get anyone

    • Matt 2 years ago

      I had faith in AA till he signed John gibbons. At least JP would put money on the table to try and lure free agents north of the border

    • Matt 2 years ago

      I had faith in AA till he signed John gibbons. At least JP would put money on the table to try and lure free agents north of the border

      • TO647 2 years ago

        And how did that work out for JP?

      • Baseball Realism 2 years ago

        How did the Vernon Wells and Alex Rios signing turn out ?

  26. Dodgers.714 2 years ago

    He soon signs with dodgers and then nobody wins the jersey I promised if he signed elsewhere

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