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  1. Picture of the Day: Yu Darvish, Texas Ranger

    Jan 20, 2012, 9:31 PM EDT

    Texas Rangers Introduce Yu Darvish

    Yu Darvish was officially introduced as a member of the Texas Rangers during a press conference earlier this evening in the “Hall of Fame room” at the Ballpark in Arlington. According to T.R. Sullivan of MLB.com, an estimated 200 members of the Japanese media were on hand for the occasion. Below is a picture of…

  2. Norichika Aoki took a big pay cut to leave Japan for Brewers

    Jan 20, 2012, 10:47 AM EDT

    Aoki

    For most Japanese players coming to America the amount a team bids to secure their exclusive negotiating rights through the posting process ends up being similar to the amount they sign for during the 30-day window. For instance, the Rangers bid $51.7 million for Yu Darvish and then signed him to a six-year, $60 million…

  3. Details of Yu Darvish’s contract with the Rangers

    Jan 20, 2012, 9:00 AM EDT

    Yu Darvish Getty

    Jeff Wilson of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram has the year-by-year breakdown of Yu Darvish‘s contract with the Rangers: 2012: $5.5 million 2013: $9.5 million 2014: $10 million 2015: $10 million 2016: $10 million 2017: $11 million The deal was initially reported as a six-year, $60 million contract, but it turns out that $56 million is…

  4. Yoenis Cespedes hit a home run in the Dominican Winter League last night

    Jan 19, 2012, 8:52 AM EDT

    Yoenis Cespedes AP

    Yoenis Cespedes‘ early struggles in the Dominican Winter League playoffs have been well documented, but he finally caught up with one last night. The 26-year-old outfielder turned on a 97 mph fastball from Astros’ Rule 5 pick right-hander Rhiner Cruz for a long home run over the left field fence. Below is the video footage,…

  5. Rangers GM says signing Prince Fielder is “very unlikely”

    Jan 18, 2012, 9:56 PM EDT

    fielder getty brewers

    Rangers GM Jon Daniels addressed the speculation that his team might be a serious suitor for free agent slugger Prince Fielder after Wednesday’s press conference announcing the Yu Darvish contract. From MLB.com beat writer T.R. Sullivan: Jon Daniels, off camera, on the Rangers chances of pursuing Fielder: “I’m intimately aware of our budget and it’s very…

  6. We’re expecting a lot from Yu

    Jan 18, 2012, 6:22 PM EDT

    yu darvish in nippon uniform

    Yeah, I went with the cute headline. Sue me. In signing Yu Darvish to a six-year, $60 million contract, the Rangers committed $111.7 million to the 25-year-old hurler. Whether he’ll stay healthy and justify the expense is anyone’s guess, but given his track record, it was a price worth paying. My guess is that Darvish…

  7. Rangers sign Yu Darvish to six-year, $60 million deal, bringing total investment to $112 million

    Jan 18, 2012, 5:03 PM EDT

    darvish getty japan team

    With the 30-day negotiating window set to expire this afternoon Yu Darvish and the Rangers have agreed to a six-year contract that will bring the Japanese phenom to Texas, with Jeff Passan of Yahoo! Sports reporting that the deal is worth $60 million with an additional $10 million in potential incentives. Last month the Rangers…

  8. Report: Rangers and Yu Darvish agree to deal

    Jan 18, 2012, 4:51 PM EDT

    darvish getty wide

    UPDATE: Nothing official yet and no word on the terms, but Jeff Passan of Yahoo! Sports reports that the Rangers and Darvish have agreed to a deal. ========== With less than two hours to go until the Rangers’ deadline to sign Yu Darvish arrives, T.R. Sullivan of MLB.com reports that an “agreement looks imminent.” According…

  9. Yoenis Cespedes says the Cubs have had “the most interest”

    Jan 18, 2012, 10:15 AM EDT

    yoenis cespedes getty

    Last week Yoenis Cespedes named six teams that have shown heavy interest in signing him and yesterday the Cuban outfielder revealed that the Cubs have had “the most interest in me.” Cespedes told the Associated Press that he’s “had dinner a couple of times” with Cubs officials and “they have shown more interest than others.”…

  10. The Rangers have until 5PM today to sign Yu Darvish

    Jan 18, 2012, 9:50 AM EDT

    darvish getty japan team

    Today is the deadline for the Rangers to reach a deal with Yu Darvish. The sides have until 5pm Eastern.  These things tend to go to the wire, and all along it is has been expected that a deal would be done.  This is fun though. T.R. Sullivan of MLB.com: The word this morning is…

  11. Brewers sign Japanese outfielder Norichika Aoki

    Jan 17, 2012, 5:40 PM EDT

    Aoki

    UPDATE: Aoki and the Brewers have agreed to a two-year deal with an option for 2014. ========== With two hours remaining until the deadline to sign Norichika Aoki general manager Doug Melvin told Tom Haudricourt of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel that the Brewers are “close” to a deal with the Japanese outfielder. Milwaukee got a…

  12. Rangers “expect to sign” Yu Darvish, but also adding Prince Fielder is unlikely

    Jan 17, 2012, 2:30 PM EDT

    darvish wide getty

    There have been some reports about roadblocks in the contract negotiations between the Rangers and Yu Darvish, but according to T.R. Sullivan of MLB.com they “expect to sign” the Japanese right-hander before tomorrow’s late-afternoon deadline. There’s also been some speculation that the Rangers could sign Darvish to a huge long-term deal and then add Prince…

  13. Rangers, Yu Darvish not gelling on length of contract

    Jan 15, 2012, 10:05 AM EDT

    darvish getty

    Rangers president Nolan Ryan seemed confident last week that a deal would be struck with Japanese starter Yu Darvish before Wednesday’s deadline. But that’s suddenly just three days away. According to Jeff Passan of Yahoo! Sports, the two sides are disagreeing on the amount of years — not the amount of dollars — that will…

  14. Yankees, Mariners agree to Jesus Montero-for-Michael Pineda swap

    Jan 13, 2012, 7:51 PM EDT

    New York Yankees Jesus Montero hits a two-run single against the Baltimore Orioles  in New York

    UPDATE: Greg Johns of MLB.com was told by a team source that the Mariners are sending Michael Pineda and 19-year-old right-hander Jose Campos to the Yankees for Jesus Montero and right-hander Hector Noesi. It’s easy to say the Mariners should have just signed Prince Fielder and kept Pineda, but perhaps this was an acknowledgement that…

  15. Rangers meeting with Prince Fielder in Dallas

    Jan 13, 2012, 4:17 PM EDT

    Prince Fielder, Corey Hart, Ryan Braun, Rickie Weeks

    Most of the recent reports about Prince Fielder center around various teams not being interested in paying his asking price, but now Bob Nightengale of USA Today reports that the Rangers are meeting with the free agent first baseman at a Dallas hotel today. That doesn’t necessarily mean a deal is close, but clearly the…

  16. Yoenis Cespedes names six teams with “a lot of interest”

    Jan 13, 2012, 12:15 PM EDT

    Yoennis Cespedes

    Yoenis Cespedes made his winter league debut in the Dominican Republic last night, going 0-for-3 with three strikeouts, and afterward the Cuban defector told local reporter Dionisio Soldevila that six teams have expressed “a lot of interest” in signing him. According to Cespedes those half-dozen teams are the Marlins, Cubs, White Sox, Orioles, Tigers, and…

  17. Yoenis Cespedes playing winter ball for some reason

    Jan 13, 2012, 9:02 AM EDT

    Yoenis Cespedes AP

    Yoenis Cespedes has a bit of mystery about him.  Gaudy numbers from Cuba. Far more limited footage and scouting of him freely available than of most hot properties. In spite of that — or perhaps because of it — he’s set to become a free agent and get himself a contract in the $50-60 million range…

  18. The Rangers have “made inquiries” about Roy Oswalt

    Jan 13, 2012, 8:20 AM EDT

    oswalt getty

    I swear, someone decided this winter that we’re going to talk about Roy Oswalt like he’s a 17 year-old girl in the 1950s.  First people were “eyeing” him.  Now Gerry Fraley of the Dallas Morning News reports that the Rangers have “made inquiries.” Gee, I hope they talk to Roy’s father first and declare their intentions.…

  19. Nolan Ryan “optimistic” about striking deal with Yu Darvish

    Jan 12, 2012, 10:02 PM EDT

    darvish wide getty

    The Rangers have less than a week to work out a contract with Japanese right-hander Yu Darvish, for whom they committed a record $51,703,411 posting fee back in mid-December. But there’s no concern within the organization about the ticking clock. According to Richard Durrett of ESPN Dallas, Rangers president Nolan Ryan said Thursday night that…

  20. Marlins planning aggressive pursuit of Yoenis Cespedes

    Jan 12, 2012, 7:04 PM EDT

    cespedes getty

    The Yankees, Phillies, Cubs, Nationals, Tigers and White Sox have all made it known that they plan to pursue Cuban defector Yoenis Cespedes once he becomes eligible for major league free agency. But those clubs may have to contend with a Miami front office that is willing to spend wildly. According to Juan C. Rodriguez of the…

  21. How good does Yoenis Cespedes project to be in the majors?

    Jan 12, 2012, 1:48 PM EDT

    Yoenis Cespedes AP

    Cuban defector Yoenis Cespedes is establishing residency in the Dominican Republic so that he can become a free agent and sign with an MLB team for what many people are speculating could be close to $50 million, but how good does the 26-year-old outfielder figure to be in America? Projecting prospects based on minor-league numbers…

  22. Hiroyuki Nakajima returns to Japan after failing to sign with Yankees

    Jan 10, 2012, 10:47 AM EDT

    nakajima getty

    Japanese infielder Hiroyuki Nakajima failed to reach an agreement with the Yankees after they bid $2 million for his exclusive negotiating rights, so he’s returning to his old team in Japan. Patrick Newman of NPB Tracker notes that Nakajima has signed a one-year deal with the Seibu Lions worth around $3.6 million, adding that the…

  23. The Rangers are offering Yu Darvish “Dice-K money”

    Jan 9, 2012, 11:50 AM EDT

    darvish getty japan team

    Jon Heyman reports that the Texas Rangers are “offering about ‘Dice K money”” to Yu Darvish and that, as such, a deal is not close at the moment. Matsuzaka’s deal with the Red Sox was for six years and $52 million, and that seems way light of what most people have been projecting Darvish is…

  24. Brewers put Japanese outfielder Norichika Aoki through 75-minute workout

    Jan 9, 2012, 10:15 AM EDT

    Aoki

    As expected, Norichika Aoki traveled to Arizona over the weekend to have an in-person workout with the Brewers after they bid $2.5 million for the Japanese outfielder’s exclusive negotiating rights. Nikkon Sports, via Patrick Newman of NPB Tracker, reports that the workout lasted 75 minutes and “included catch, long toss, batting practice and base running.”…

  25. Rangers expressing interest in free agent Hiroki Kuroda?

    Jan 8, 2012, 8:51 AM EDT

    kuroda getty

    Take this one with a grain of salt, as Japanese news services have been wrong many times before about the goings-on in MLB. But here’s the report… According to Sponichi, via the invaluable Patrick Newman of NPB Tracker, the Rangers are expressing free-agent interest in Hiroki Kuroda. Kuroda has drawn attention from several teams this offseason,…

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