Free Agent News: Uehara, Kawakami
We interupt our regularly scheduled programming to bring you non-Tazawa news.
Kenshin Kawakami and Koji Uehara are slowly beginning to make news. I expect to hear a lot more about them after CC Sabathia, Derek Lowe, Ben Sheets, AJ Burnett, and Junichi Tazawa sign. There are a few items to pass along though.
Kawakami: Has reportedly changed agents from Tony Attanasio to former Dodgers GM Dan Evans, the agent that got Kosuke Fukudome signed with the Cubs. Initially it was reported that Evans would only handle Kawakami’s negotiations with Japanese teams, but that doesn’t seem to be the case any longer.
Hanshin seems to be the only NPB team interested in signing Kawakami. It was previously reported they would offer 4 years, $18M, but it’s since been reported that they are prepared to offer a deal in excess of 3 years, $18M. An average salary of $6M+ seems a lot more likely to get a deal done, but I still think he’s headed to the Majors.
On the MLB side of the Pacific, the Giants, Mets, and Red Sox have been mentioned as possible suitors. Being a Bay Area resident I know which one I’d go for.
Uehara: Uehara is looking for a multi-year deal that will let him remain a starter. Nikkan Sports suggests that eight teams might be interested: the Orioles, Giants, Yankees, Mets, Angels, Rangers, Indians, and Twins. Any team that needs rotational depth and isn’t afraid to commit to two years could be a fit for Uehara.