Details of Yu Darvish’s contract with the Rangers

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Jeff Wilson of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram has the year-by-year breakdown of Yu Darvish’s contract with the Rangers:

2012: $5.5 million
2013: $9.5 million
2014: $10 million
2015: $10 million
2016: $10 million
2017: $11 million

The deal was initially reported as a six-year, $60 million contract, but it turns out that $56 million is the actual guarantee. However, Wilson reports that Darvish can earn the additional four million through roster bonuses. The contract also includes a lump sum bonus if he wins the Cy Young Award. The Rangers are making an investment of nearly $108 million if you include the $51,703,411 posting fee that will be paid to Darvish’s old team, the Nippon Ham-Fighters.

Per Richard Durrett of ESPNDallas.com, Rangers general manager Jon Daniels said during a radio appearance Thursday morning that Darvish has two possible avenues to opt out of the final year of the contract:

1) If he wins the Cy Young in one year and finishes in the “top three or four” in the balloting in another of the first five years of the contract.

2) If he finishes second for Cy Young in one year and in the top three or four in the balloting in two additional years.

Those are some pretty lofty performance thresholds. But if Darvish somehow reaches them and opts out, it’s safe to say the Rangers would be pretty satisfied with the way things worked out.

Darvish is set to be officially introduced as a member of the Rangers during a press conference tonight at the Ballpark in Arlington.

Japanese Baseball to begin June 19

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Japanese League commissioner Atsushi Saito announced that Japan’s professional baseball season will open on June 19. Teams can being practice games on June 2. There will be no fans. Indeed, the league has not yet even begun to seriously discuss a plan for fans to begin attending games, though that may happen eventually.

The season will begin three months after its originally scheduled opening day of March 20. It will be 120 games long. Teams in each six-team league — the Central League and Pacific League — will play 24 games against each league opponent. There will be no interleague play and no all-star game.

The announcement came in the wake of a national state of emergency being lifted for both Tokyo and the island of Hokkaido. The rest of the country emerged from the state of emergency earlier this month. This will allow the Japanese leagues to follow leagues in South Korea and Taiwan which have been playing for several weeks.

In the United States, Major League Baseball is hoping to resume spring training in mid June before launching a shortened regular season in early July. That plan is contingent on the league and the players’ union coming to an agreement on both financial arrangements and safety protocols for a 2020 season. Negotiations on both are ongoing. Major League Baseball will, reportedly, make a formal proposal about player compensation tomorrow.