Zach wrote:Who makes the determination as to his status for signing purposes? What is the formal process for MLB to make that determination?
A_K wrote:Keith Law and others are reporting that he's an unrestricted free agent whose contract will be subject to the International Free Agent bonus cap of $2.9 million.
A_K wrote:Unless he waits until July to sign, than his bonus counts to the current fiscal year. He's not going to wait until July, so yeah, it counts for this year, which gives the O's a bit of an advantage.
Latest On Shohei Otani
By Ben Nicholson-Smith [October 23 at 4:02pm CST]
Shohei Otani, the Japanese pitching prospect who intends to pursue a career in MLB, appears to be an elite talent comparable to those selected in the top half of the first round of baseball’s amateur draft. The right-hander had been a potential first overall pick in Japan before he announced his intention to play for an MLB organization. And, according to Jim Callis of Baseball America, Dodgers assistant GM Logan White told Japanese reporters that Otani could go first overall if he were eligible for the MLB draft.
However, the 18-year-old free agent won’t be draft eligible. Otani will be subject to spending restrictions as an international amateur, which means teams will face consequences if they exceed the $2.9MM international bonus threshold to sign him. Teams will be taxed at a rate of 100% for exceeding the 2.9MM threshold by more than 15%. These clubs would also forfeit the right to spend more than $250K on an international player during the following year’s signing period.
Callis suggests these restrictions won’t be too much of a deterrent for interested MLB teams. Boston GM Ben Cherington confirmed today that the Red Sox met with Otani, Alex Speier of WEEI.com reports (on Twitter). The Red Sox and Rangers “have done the most work in this arena,” ESPN.com’s Buster Olney reported today. Meanwhile, the Angels aren’t expected to be heavily involved, Alden Gonzalez of MLB.com reports (on Twitter).
Matt P wrote:If they want him they'll get him. If they don't think he is worth it they won't bid on his services. I trust Duquette.
Old Sneakers wrote:He's a fine talent from all reports I've seen. However, exceeding that 2.9 million cap sounds awfully risky for an eighteen year old to me. I would prefer the team not tie it's own hands for next year as well for a single talent that is just as combustible as any other teen aged arm.
I wouldn't do that for him and I doubt any other team would, either. That being said, if we could get him for less than 2M then you have to invest in that kind of talent.
It would be like getting a bonus 1st rnd pick for a farm system that is really still barren.
MLB Teams May Have To Wait For Otani
By Ben Nicholson-Smith [October 24, 2012 at 1:00pm CST]
Shohei Otani intends to pursue a career in MLB, but that won’t stop a Japanese team from selecting him in the upcoming amateur draft for NPB teams. Masao Yamada, the general manager for the Nippon Ham Fighters, said he intends to select the highly-regarded 18-year-old with the first overall selection in the upcoming draft, according to a Sanspo report passed along by Patrick Newman of NPB Tracker.
If an NPB team drafts Otani, he would be prevented from signing with an MLB team for several months. The drafting team would have the rights to the right-hander until the end of March, 2013 under an agreement between MLB and NPB. If he declines to sign with an NPB team, MLB teams will be able to bid on his as a free agent. Teams will be subject to international spending restrictions, but as Jim Callis of Baseball America explained this week, those restrictions won’t necessarily be a major deterrent.
The Red Sox, Rangers and Dodgers appear to have some interest in Otani. The Angels don’t seem interested.
Read more at http://www.mlbtraderumors.com/2012/10/m ... 5MQ1r3m.99
What are your thoughts on Shohei Otani, both from a talent perspective and signability? If I interpret the new rules correctly, he's subject to the $2.9 million bonus pool every team has for the international signing period from July 2, 2012 through June 15, 2013. I'm a Rangers fan, and it would appear they're in good position because they were unusually quiet this year (Jairo Beras notwithstanding), and I haven't seen any high-profile signings that would affect their pool. What other teams still have a significant portion of their pool available?
In my continuing quest to get a head start on the competition in my keeper fantasy league, what is your take on Shohei Otani, who has opted to play in the United States rather than Japan?
With major league teams limited on how much they can spend on international amateurs, which teams still have bonus pool room left to sign Shohei Otani now that he has declared his intention to come to the United States? Which teams are basically out of contention due to previous spending? Would it benefit Otani to wait until next July 2 to sign in order to maximize his bonus?
Otani was the potential No. 1 overall pick in this week's Japanese draft until he announced yesterday that he plans to play in the United States. The 18-year-old righthander is extremely athletic and projectable at 6-foot-4 and 190 pounds, and his fastball has been clocked in the upper 90s. He also throws a slider and a splitter, though his secondary pitches and command are still works in progress. After the Dodgers met with Otani in September, assistant GM Logan White told the Japanese press that Otani had the talent to be the top overall choice in the MLB draft.
Under the new Collective Bargaining Agreement, teams get $2.9 million with which to sign international amateurs. But unlike the restrictions for exceeding draft bonus pools, which could cost a club its next two first-round choices, the penalties for surpassing international bonus pools aren't as harsh. A team that blows past its international pool by 15 percent or more would pay a 100-percent tax on the overage and be forbidden to pay an international amateur more than $250,000 during next year's signing period.
For a player with Otani's upside, that's not much of a deterrent. Also consider that in the draft, a player of his caliber would be available only to the teams choosing at the very top. On the worldwide market, all 30 teams are in play. Clubs accustomed to picking at the bottom of the draft may be willing to pay dearly for the opportunity to sign him.
Three teams—the Dodgers, Rangers and Red Sox—have met with Otani in Japan, and he said yesterday that he plans on signing with one of them. We don't have access to how much money clubs have remaining in their international bonus pools, but Texas appears to have the most among those three teams. (The Rangers' $4.5 million signing of Beras doesn't count against the pool because it happened in February.) Boston, which spent a combined $1.36 million on Dominican righthander Jose Almonte, Dominican shortstop Wendell Rijo and Venezuelan lefty Dedgar Jimenez, has the least money among the three clubs.
But as I said, I don't think cap space is going to matter when it comes to signing Otani. For the same reason, I don't think he'll have to wait until next year's signing period to maximize his money. He'll need some time to develop, but Otani has a special arm and will get paid accordingly.
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