Report: Angels eye unbeaten Japanese ace
The Los Angeles Angels recently scouted Masahiro Tanaka and is considering a pursuit of the undefeated Japanese pitcher this offseason, the Los Angeles Times reported.
The Los Angeles Angels recently scouted Masahiro Tanaka and are considering a pursuit of the undefeated Japanese pitcher this offseason, the Los Angeles Times reported.
The Angels had a scout in Japan last week to watch Tanaka, who could cost the team a posting fee of $25 million, according to the paper.
The Dodgers have also scouted the Japanese right-handeder, a source told ESPNLosAngeles.com's Mark Saxon.
The Dodgers signed a 19-year-old Japanese prospect, Takumi Numata, to a minor league deal Monday. They likely scouted Tanaka while they were there.
Tanaka set a Japanese professional baseball record for consecutive victories in a season by winning his 21st straight decision last Friday.
The Dodgers will go into 2014 with Clayton Kershaw, Zack Greinke and Hyun-Jin Ryu in their rotation, but they have some uncertainty beyond that. Ricky Nolasco will be a free agent and Chad Billingsley and Josh Beckett are coming off serious injuries.
Tanaka improved to 21-0 with a complete-game win in the Rakuten Eagles' 6-2 victory over the Orix Buffaloes. The previous record of 20 was set in 1957 by Kazuhisa Inao.
The last time Tanaka took a loss was Aug. 19, 2012. Since then, the right-hander has won 25 straight, one more than the Major League Baseball mark set by Carl Hubbell of the New York Giants in 1936-37.
Many in Japan are suggesting that Tanaka, 24, will pursue an MLB career after the season, a move that would make him the most sought-after Japanese export since Yu Darvish.
Information from ESPNLosAngeles.com's Mark Saxon and The Associated Press was used in this report.
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