Yoshinobu Yamamoto’s conditions for joining a MLB team
Japanese pitcher Yoshinobu Yamamoto is one of the so-called big fish in MLB free agency. The Yankees and Dodgers have both been linked - could they sign him?
Japanese pitcher Yoshinobu Yamamoto has officially declared himself available to negotiate with MLB franchises that may be interested in his services for the new campaign.
According to the latest information to emerge, the samurai player would set out a number of conditions that his future employers in MLB would have to meet. One of the most eye-catching requests is that Yamamoto would only sign with a franchise that has a Japanese baseball player on its roster. Another is that they must be a competitive team, capable of winning silverware.
Of the teams that have remained the main favorites, not all of them would meet this condition, firstly neither the New York Yankees nor the Los Angeles Dodgers have a Japanese player among their ranks.
MLB teams with Japanese players in their rosters
Another of the teams that have shown interest, the Toronto Blue Jays, have pitcher Yusei Kikuchi; the Boston Red Sox have outfielder Masataka Yoshida - who curiously, is another former Orix player... the New York Mets have pitcher Kodai Senga; and the Chicago Cubs have outfielder Seiya Suzuki.
If there is any truth in this condition, the panorama may change further because there is another Japanese baseball player who is part of the ‘big fish’ in MLB free agency - Shohei Ohtani, who together with his compatriot could be lethal pieces for any franchise.
According to recent reports, Ohtani’s preferred destination is the Texas Rangers, followed by the San Francisco Giants and the Los Angeles Dodgers. Alternative options include the New York Mets, the Boston Red Sox, and the Angels themselves.