Masahiro Tanaka Opts In to Final 3 Years, $67 Million of Yankees Contract

Alec Nathan@@AlecBNathanFeatured ColumnistNovember 3, 2017

NEW YORK, NY - OCTOBER 18:  Masahiro Tanaka #19 of the New York Yankees reacts after the end of the top of the seventh inning against the Houston Astros in Game Five of the American League Championship Series at Yankee Stadium on October 18, 2017 in the Bronx borough of New York City.  (Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images)
Al Bello/Getty Images

The New York Yankees announced Friday that ace Masahiro Tanaka has opted in to the final three years of his contract. 

Yankees PR Dept. @YankeesPR

Statement from @t_masahiro18: https://t.co/HVBwht85w1

Tanaka, 29, will earn $67 million between 2018 and '20. 

MLB Network's Jon Morosi broke down the factors that contributed to Tanaka's decision: 

Jon Morosi @jonmorosi

Tanaka weighed postseason value bump against risk of other teams' reservations about partial UCL tear; he chose safest course. @MLB

During the Yankees' ascendant 2017 campaign, Tanaka went 13-12 with a 4.74 ERA, 1.24 WHIP and a career-high 194 strikeouts. 

He was particularly strong over the season's final few months. 

After the All-Star break, Tanaka went 6-4 with a 3.77 ERA, 91 strikeouts and 14 walks. 

Tanaka also brought some of his best stuff in the postseason and allowed two earned runs and 10 hits over 20 innings in three October starts. 

Now that the Japanese stud is locked up, the Yankees will enter 2018 with Tanaka, Luis Severino and Sonny Gray all under contract. 

The big question moving forward is whether free agent CC Sabathia—who has been clear about his desire to return to the Bronxwill be back in the fold following a superlative showing in the postseason at 37 years old. 


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