Hokkaido Nippon-Ham Fighters “definitely” plan to accept high bid for Yu Darvish

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Just a quick mini-update while we patiently (or anxiously, depending upon your fandom) wait to learn who had the top bid for Yu Darvish.

No big news yet, but Danny Knobler of CBSSports.com reports that the Hokkaido Nippon-Ham Fighters have “definitely” decided to accept the top bid.

Hardly a shocker, as Franz Lidz of SI.com reported over the weekend that the posting fee is expected to top the record $51,111,111 sum that the Red Sox paid for exclusive negotiating rights with right-hander Daisuke Matsuzaka back in November of 2006.

An official announcement is expected at some point tonight (U.S. time), but Knobler hears that it might not happen for another three hours or so. Stay tuned.

Report: Pirates sign Felipe Rivero to four-year contract extension

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Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic reports that the Pirates will sign reliever Felipe Rivero to a four-year contract extension that includes two club options. The total value of the deal is believed to be $22 million and each club option is worth $10 million.

Rivero, 26, did not come to an agreement with the Pirates to avoid arbitration in his first year of eligibility ahead of last Friday’s deadline. He requested a $2.9 million salary for the 2018 season while the Pirates countered at $2.4 million. This extension will cover all four years of Rivero’s arbitration eligibility and the two club options can cover his first two years of free agency as well.

Rivero was one of baseball’s best relievers last season, finishing with 21 saves, a 1.67 ERA, and an 88/20 K/BB ratio in 75 1/3 innings. The Pirates acquired him from the Nationals along with minor leaguer Taylor Hearn ahead of the 2016 non-waiver trade deadline in the Mark Melancon deal.

Presumably, Rivero’s extension was in the works before he knew anything about the Andrew McCutchen trade. He made a couple of tweets following this afternoon’s news. In one, he used only the “facepalm” emoji. The other was a .gif of The Office character Jim Halpert yelling, “What is going on?”