Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times reports that the Tampa Bay Rays have signed Japanese slugger Yoshitomo Tsutsugo to a two-year deal worth around $12 million. They Rays will also will have to pay a 20 percent posting fee to his old team, the Yokohama DeNa BayStars.
Tsutsugo, 28, has averaged 33 homers and 93 RBIs over the last five seasons in the Central League of NPB. He’s an on-base machine, with a career line of .284/.382/.525. In 2019 he hit .272/.388/.511. His best season came in 2016 when he hit .322/.430/.680 with 44 homers and 110 RBI in 133 games.
Tsutsugo will likely move around from left field to DH for the Rays.
David Price has opted out of the 2020 season. he’s the biggest star to do so to date. He said the that he will not play the 2020 season, citing health concerns because of the coronavirus pandemic.
Price joins Ryan Zimmerman and Joe Ross of the Washington Nationals, Ian Desmond of the Colorado Rockies, Mike Leake of the Arizona Diamondbacks, and free agent Tyson Ross on the list of players who have chosen not to take part in the season.
Price, who was traded from the Boston Red Sox to the Dodgers in a five-player deal in February, previously agreed to pay more than 200 Dodgers minor leaguers $1,000 each to make up for lost wages. He was poised to enter the fifth season of a seven-year, $217 million contract he signed with the Red Sox in December of 2015. Per the terms of the agreement between the MLBPA and MLB, Price will not be paid for the 2020 season.