Steve Gilbert of MLB.com says that the Dbacks are out of the running for Masahiro Tanaka. It’s unclear if it’s because Tanaka has decided on another team of if the Dbacks just dropped out of the bidding.
It always seemed like Arizona was a long shot. Their pockets aren’t as deep as the Dodgers and the Yankees and, at least to the extent you can rely on such things, the reports of Tanaka’s non-monetary preferences such as the size of the Japanese community, ease of getting back and forth to Japan, etc., match up way better with L.A. and New York than they do Phoenix.
My guess is still Los Angeles. But we’ll know soon enough.
UPDATE: It’s reportedly the Yankees.
UPDATE: Rosenthal is now walking the report back a bit, saying that indications that the Yankees and Happ are close to a deal but that it is not yet done.
10:29 AM: Ken Rosenthal reports that the Yankees and J.A. Happ have come to terms on a three-year deal. The agreement is pending a physical. The financial terms are not yet known.
Happ just turned 36, but he has been effective enough to warrant a three-year commitment. The Yankees know this as well as anyone, having acquired him last year and watched him post a 7-0 record and a 2.69 ERA in 11 starts in New York. For the entire season he was 17-6 with a 3.65 ERA and a K/BB ratio of 193/51 in 177.2 innings between the Yankees and the Blue Jays.
With Happ back in the fold, the Yankees rotation now consists of Luis Severino, James Paxton, Happ, Masahiro Tanaka and CC Sabathia, not necessarily in that order. A good group, assuming it stays healthy.