Breaking: New York Yankees in bidding war for top pitcher

The San Francisco Giants came out on top of a bidding war in MLB free agency for Korean outfielder Jung Hoo Lee. Now, days after the Los Angeles Dodgers landed Shohei Ohtani, San Francisco is reportedly in the hunt with other top teams for Japanese pitcher Shōta Imanaga.

According to Jon Morosi of MLB Network, the Giants have shown interest in Imanaga this winter. Joined in a bidding war with the New York Yankees and New York Mets, Imanaga’s market is reportedly delayed by the pitchers ahead of him in free agency.

San Francisco, New York and the Los Angeles Dodgers are among the clubs also pursuing Japanese starting pitcher Yoshinobu Yamamoto, who is the next big domino to fall in free agency. Once Yamamoto is signed, Imanaga’s market is expected to materialize.

Shōta Imanaga career stats: 3.24 ERA, 1.07 WHIP, 1,183-301 K-BB, 9.4 K/9, 2.4 BB/9

Imanaga, age 30, is coming off a strong season in Japan. Across 148 innings pitched in the Japan Central League, the veteran southpaw posted a 2.80 ERA with a 10.6 K/0 and a 7.25 K/BB ratio.

Under MLB rules, teams are required to pay 20 percent of the contract value to an international club for the posting fee of said player if they’re signed to a contract worth less than $25 million. If Imanaga’s contract is valued between $25-$50 million, there’s an additional $5 million that must be paid plus 17.5 percent on everything over $25 million.

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