Doesn't matter because his numbers are staggering. In 27 starts last season for the Rakuten Golden Eagles of the Japanese League, Tanaka was 24-0 with a 1.27 ERA.
That would look good atop anybody's rotation.
MLB.com's Todd Zolecki reports the Phillies have contacted Casey Close, Tanaka's agent. Now, Zolecki warns that it could be the Phillies doing their due diligence but the Phillies have come out of nowhere in the past (i.e. Cliff Lee). General manager Ruben Amaro even said "we try to do our business quietly."
So now begins the speculation.
I don't think Tanaka ends up in Philadelphia but we can dream right? The 25-year-old right hander is expected to command a salary in the six-year, $100 million range and has as many as 12 teams vying for his services. ESPN reports Tanaka is in the United States to meet with "several" teams over the next few days. He needs to sign a deal with a MLB team before January 24th.
Money isn't the issue here. The Phillies new television contract makes sure of that. For now, we wait.
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