Under the MLB labor contract agreed to last November, Otani is defined as an global amateur because he is not 25 and does not have six years of service in any professional leagues.
"I think he wants to compete against the best, and I think that's great", New York Yankees manager Joe Girardi said.
"I think it's about where you draw the line being successful as both a pitcher and a batter", Tanaka said. "They want to match up against the best and see how they fare". Had he waited until after he was 25, he would be a free agent and not subject to the bonus pools.
Major League Baseball teams are prohibited from circumventing the restrictions, such as with an unannounced agreement for future seasons, and would receive harsh punishment if caught by the commissioner's office. He would then be considered a professional.
On Tuesday, Otani pitched 5 2/3 scoreless innings in just his third start of the season.
Shohei Otani, considered the Babe Ruth of Japan, is reportedly ready to come to the Major League Baseball next season, and the Yankees are one of several teams interested in his services.
Shohei Otani, the next impact player from Japan, is preparing a 2018 Major League Baseball debut and it isn't a stretch to picture him in pinstripes.
Regardless of what Otani gets this winter, not waiting two years could cost him more than $200 million. Teams have hard caps and limited bonus pools they can use on global free agents.
The Babe Ruth of Japan reportedly is coming to the Major Leagues next season with intentions to continue on as a starting pitcher and designated hitter. He would not be eligible for salary arbitration until after the 2020 season and for free agency until after the 2023 season. "Perhaps it's not possible to win 20 games and hit 50 home runs, but it's where you draw that line of being successful".
He missed two months early this season and a stretch in July and August with injuries to his ankle and thigh - but he still has batted.346 with seven home runs and 28 RBIs in 51 games. "But anything is possible and I think it's wrong for anybody to say he can do this or can't do that".
"I think you'd be concerned a little bit the day before his start". "I think that's what's in every competitor's heart". So to me, times where you need to go to a six-man rotation becomes a lot easier with that open spot.