Outfielder Masataka Yoshida and the Boston Red Sox are in agreement on a five-year deal that will be worth $90 million, sources familiar with the deal told ESPN on Wednesday.
The posting fee for the Orix Buffaloes will be in the $15.4 million range, bringing the total outlay for Yoshida to around $105.4 million.
Yoshida, 29, is an on-base machine who led Nippon Professional Baseball in OPS the last two seasons. His bat-to-ball skills are absolutely world-class: just 41 strikeouts in 508 plate appearances, with 80 walks. Only Luis Arraez had a lower strikeout rate in MLB last season.
The 5-foot-8, 176-pound Yoshida hit .335/.447/.551 with 21 home runs and 88 RBIs for Orix last season. Over his seven-year career with Orix, the left-handed-hitting Yoshida has batted .327/.421/.539, and he led Nippon Professional Baseball each of the past two seasons in OPS. He helped steward the Buffaloes to a Japan Series championship this year.
MLB’s posting system compensates foreign teams whose players sign with a major league club. The team receives $5 million for the first $25 million of a player’s contract, $4.375 million of the next $25 million and 15% of any money beyond $50 million.