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Japanese pitcher Igawa says he is confidence in playing Major League

Japanese pitcher Igawa says he is confidence in playing Major League

Japanese pitcher Kei Igawa said Thursday he is confident of succeeding in the U.S. major league after finalizing a multimillion dollar deal with the New York Yankees.
"With my nine years of experience with the Hanshin Tigers, I am confident in playing" in Major League Baseball, Igawa told reporters in Hitachinaka, a city near his hometown northeast of Tokyo.
The 27-year-old Igawa and the New York Yankees completed their US$20 million, five-year contract on Wednesday, a deal that was in the works for weeks.
The Yankees had until Thursday to finalize an agreement with Igawa after bidding more than US$26 million month for the right to negotiate with him. The left-hander went 14-9 with a 2.97 ERA and 194 strikeouts for the Hanshin Tigers in Japan's Central League last season.
"I will try to take my rotation throughout the year without any injury," Igawa said.
Igawa should fit at the back end of a rotation that includes Wang Chien-ming, Mike Mussina, Andy Pettitte and Randy Johnson _ though the Yankees are exploring trade offers for Johnson.
Last week, Igawa visited New York and took a tour of Yankee Stadium. He becomes the Yankees' newest Japanese player _ they also have left fielder Hideki Matsui.
New York's biggest rival, the Boston Red Sox, bid US$51.11 million for negotiating rights to Japanese ace Daisuke Matsuzaka this offseason and signed him to a US$52 million, six-year contract.


Updated : 2021-04-23 03:42 GMT+08:00