Japanese outfielder Norichika Aoki posted by Yakult Swallows

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Jon Morosi of FOXSports.com reports that the Yakult Swallows have filed the necessary paperwork to post Japanese center fielder Norichika Aoki, as expected.

Aoki is a three-time batting champion with a career .329 average and the 29-year-old is considered a plus defender with excellent speed, so he figures to draw a decent amount of interest despite limited power.

Last week Adam Kilgore of the Washington Post reported that the Nationals could target Aoki after repeatedly failing to trade for a veteran center fielder like B.J. Upton or Denard Span.

As part of the posting process, MLB teams will submit bids for exclusive negotiating rights to Aoki and then must work out a separate contract with the center fielder.