Bidding by MLB teams for the right to negotiate with star Japanese pitcher Yu Darvish ended on Wednesday afternoon, and his Japanese team, the Hokkaido Nippon Ham Fighters, officially have until Tuesday at 7 a.m. Japan time to decide if they accept the highest bid, but rumors are surfacing that the Toronto Blue Jays have won the bidding process. Toronto submitted a posting bid between $40 million and $50 million, making them the favorite to emerge from the process as the highest bidder, according to the New York Post.
The Cubs are known to have submitted a formal bid for the opportunity to negotiate a contract with Darvish, along with the Blue Jays, Yankees, and Rangers. Bidding was a four-day blind auction process, where the highest bid is submitted to his Japanese club. The Fighters will then have four days to decide if they accept the bid. If they do accept the bid, the MLB team with the accepted bid then has 30 days to negotiate with Darvish and work out a deal. If no deal is reached during the negotiation window, the posting fee is waived and Darvish will return to the Fighters for another season.
Darvish is a 25-year old, 6'5" Japanese phenom who went 18-6 with a 1.44 ERA, to go with 276 strikeouts and just 36 walks in 232 innings of work for the Hokkaido Nippon Ham Fighters in 2011.
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