Baseball: Japanese clubs to set posting fee under new system
TOKYO (Kyodo) -- Japanese clubs will be able to set a desired amount for the bidding fee of non-free agents after details of the new posting system were unveiled Friday.
Sources said the amount of the posting fee which Nippon Professional Baseball teams can decide will be capped at $20 million.
This is in stark contrast to the previous system in which Major League Baseball clubs made blind bids for the right to negotiate with a player. The highest bidder was granted an exclusive, 30-day window to try to sign him.
The new system is expected to increase opportunities for the posted player since it will open the bidding to more teams -- almost similar to being a free agent -- if the Japanese team sets a low enough price.
Once the Japanese team sets a desired amount for the posting fee, it will be made public to all 30 major league clubs. All the teams who can tender the set fee will be able to negotiate with the player.
The club that manages to sign the player will pay his Japanese team the fee. If a deal does not materialize, the player remains in Japan.
A player can only be posted once during each offseason.
The new system, which is expected to go into effect as early as next week, will pave the way for Rakuten Eagles ace Masahiro Tanaka to the majors this winter.
Throughout talks between NPB and MLB, it had been proposed to award negotiating rights to all the highest bidders under a $20 million ceiling. But in the end, the two parties agreed to let the Japanese team decide the posting fee.