Yu Darvish is coming to America to pitch.
Japan’s best pitcher and the Texas Rangers agreed before Wednesday’s deadline to a $60 million, six-year contract. In addition to the salary, the Rangers will pay a posting fee of about $51.7 million to pay to the Hokkaido Nippon Ham Fighters of Japan’s Pacific League.
The deal came at the end of a 30-day negotiating window that began Dec. 19 when the Rangers’ bid to negotiate with the pitcher was accepted. Had a deal not been reached by the 5 p.m. deadline, Darvish would have remained with the Fighters and Texas would have kept the posting fee.
When the deal was reached in Texas by his agents Don Nomura and Arn Tellem, the 25-year-old Darvish was home in Japan, where he returned for off-season training after his first and only visit to Texas two weeks ago. The Rangers plan to formally introduce Darvish on Friday.
Darvish had a 93-38 record with a 1.99 ERA over the past seven seasons in Japan. The 6-foot-5 right-hander was a two-time Pacific League MVP and a five-time All-Star.
The deal surpasses what Daisuke Matsuzaka got when he left Japan and signed with the Boston Red Sox more than five years ago.
TWINS: Relief pitcher Joel Zumaya and Minnesota have finalized their $850,000, one-year contract.
The deal includes $900,000 in performance bonuses for the oft-injured right-hander, who missed all of last season with an elbow injury.
ROCKIES: Jamie Moyer agreed to terms on a minor league contract with an invite to Colorado’s spring training, pending a physical.
The 49-year-old lefty didn’t play last season after undergoing Tommy John surgery on his throwing elbow.
MARINERS: Signed left-handed pitcher Oliver Perez to a minor league contract with an invite to major league spring training.
ASTROS: Outfielder Jack Cust agreed to a $600,000, one-year contract with Houston after getting released by Seattle and Philadelphia last year.
OBITUARY: Marty Springstead, who at the age of 36 in 1973 became the youngest umpire crew chief in World Series history, has died. He was 74.
Major League Baseball said that Springstead was found dead at his home in Florida on Tuesday night.