According to a report from Comcast SportsNet’s Luke Stuckmeyer, the Cubs will meet with Masahiro Tanaka this week. Tanaka is also scheduled to meet with the White Sox and according to Stuckmeyer the meetings could take place in Chicago.
This is the first report of a team meeting with Masahiro Tanaka.
The Cubs are one of the teams many think will be in on Masahiro Tanaka until the end of the process. The Yankees, Dodgers, Angels, Mariners and Diamondbacks are thought to be the other teams with the heaviest interest in Tanaka. The White Sox are a new addition to The Masahiro Tanaka Sweepstakes.
During an interview on MLB Network Radio, Braves’ President John Schuerholtz said Atlanta did their due diligence on Tanaka but the Braves “are not in on him.”
The Yankees reportedly made initial contact with Tanaka’s agent, Casey Close, prior to the holidays but have not formally met with Masahiro Tanaka or made an offer. Teams are expected to find out this week what it will take to sign Masahiro Tanaka as well as what he is expecting from the team.
Speculation has been the negotiations with Masahiro Tanaka will start at $17-20 million per season and many think his contract will be around six years and more than $100 million, plus the $20 million release fee.
The bidding for Tanaka is expected to heat up this week and a quick resolution does not appear to be in the making. Casey Close should take the negotiations with the interested teams to the deadline on Jan. 24 … 17 days away.