Thursday Rockpile: Masahiro Tanaka signs, pitching dominoes may now fall

Koji Watanabe

In an unsurprising move, the Yankees outspent all other suitors -- including the Dodgers and Diamondbacks -- to win the Masahiro Tanaka sweepstakes.

Masahiro Tanaka chose to sign with the Yankees yesterday for a deal paying him more than $20 million per year that also includes an opt-out clause in three years if he doesn't feel it pays him enough. For our sake, at least the Dodgers or Diamondbacks didn't sign him! Tanaka put up Nintendo numbers in Japan last year, going 24-0 with a 1.27 ERA. While these numbers won't be repeated in pinstripes, the past success of other great Japanese pitchers who have migrated to the states shows he has the chance to live up to his price tag.

The Rockies were never in this hunt, but the deal does affect them. Now the pursuit of Tanaka by the D-Backs and other teams is over, those clubs will soon begin offering contracts to the other free agents. Tracy Ringolsby details which teams might be interested in which players -- including former Rockie Ubaldo Jimenez.

Other Links

Rockies announce Rockies Fest plans, which include appearances from Carlos Gonzalez and Nolan Arenado.

The confusing plan to have LaTroy Hawkins close does not seem to bother Rex Brothers, who is happy to get outs whenever his manager wants them.

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