Wednesday, 16 January, 2019

MLBPA Agrees to Extend Self-Imposed Deadline for New Japanese Posting Agreement

Two-way star Shohei Otani 23 will be posted and play in the majors in 2018 Two-way star Shohei Otani 23 will be posted and play in the majors in 2018
Kristopher Love | 22 November, 2017, 04:49

The commissioner's office and the union extended their negotiating deadline by 24 hours after failing to reach agreement by 8 p.m. Monday.

Then, only a few hours later, there was more worldwide news when the MLB Players Association authorized the agreement between the league and Nippon Professional Baseball on a new posting system, according to multiple outlets.

Major league teams can only offer Ohtani what is in their worldwide bonus pool - the Texas Rangers reportedly have the most at $3.535 million and the Cleveland Indians have the least at $10,000.

The Giants have made no secret of their desire to jump feet-first into that process, and general manager Bobby Evans and assistant GM Jeremy Shelley visited Japan in September to scout Ohtani, a potential two-way star.

This is a lot more friendly for Major League Baseball teams and players coming over from Japan. Those numbers range from $10,000 to $3.5 million. That is, when an Major League Baseball team signs a player still under team control in NPB, the Major League Baseball team sends a "posting" fee to that NPB team. But if money were the bottom line for Ohtani, he would have waited two years when he could have come as an unfettered free agent and signed for nine figures. The fee used to be unlimited, but it has been $20 million the past several years.

According to MLB Network's Jon Morosi, previous posting rules-which dictate MLB teams can pay NPB clubs a maximum fee of $20 million-will continue to apply this offseason before a new arrangement kicks in after the 2018 campaign. The union believes Japanese free agents entering the market late potentially could impact negotiations with major league free agents. Ohtani has such a high ceiling as a pitcher and a hitter and will sign a minor league contract and play for near the minimum in 2018 that every club will want a chance to sell to him. Having a higher percentage for under $25 million - up from 15 percent - was a key compromise to get NPB to agree to this tentative new deal.

Monday afternoon was a busy one in baseball, despite the fact that no actual baseball was played (unless you count the global winter leagues).

Assuming the new deal is pushed through, Sherman reported Ohtani will have 21 days to sign once he's posted.