Even with an ERA of 3.31, an annual salary cut of 4.5 billion won, a sharp reflection “I missed the expectations of the club and fans”

 Japanese professional baseball Rakuten Golden Eagles pitcher Masahiro Tanaka (35) suffered a significant salary cut. 

On the 7th, Tanaka signed a contract for an annual salary of 425 million yen (about 4 billion won) in 2023. It is a condition that cuts a whopping 475 million yen (about 4.5 billion won) from last year’s 900 million yen (about 8.5 billion won). It was the second largest reduction in Japanese professional baseball history, following Yomiuri Giants pitcher Toshiya Sugiuchi’s 450 million yen in 2016. 

Tanaka, who returned to his parent team Rakuten in 2021 after seven years of major league life, signed a contract for the highest annual salary ever in Nippon Professional Baseball for 900 million yen. The 1+1 year contract included an option to return to the major leagues after the 2021 season, but the 2022 salary was also frozen at 900 million yen while remaining at Rakuten. 

However, it did not perform well compared to his two years of fame. In 2021, he recorded an average ERA of 3.01 with 4 wins and 9 losses in 23 games (155⅔ innings), and an average ERA of 3.31 with 9 wins and 12 losses in 25 games (163 innings) last year 토토사이트. In particular, it was disappointing compared to Tanaka’s name value and ransom, as he ranked 8th in ERA in the Pacific League last year. Last year, the overall average ERA in the Pacific League was 3.16, which was an extreme two-going hitter, and Tanaka’s average ERA of 3.31 was less than the league average. 

According to Japanese media, including ‘Sports Nippon’, Tanaka said, “There is nothing to look back on. He fell far short of club expectations with 4 wins and 9 wins in 2 years. It was the two years that betrayed the expectations of the fans. It has to change drastically,” he foreshadowed the change. 

Tanaka, who won a total of 190 victories in the U.S. and Japan with 112 wins in 9 years in Japan and 78 wins in 7 years in the major leagues, has 10 victories left to reach 200. He said, “The goal of winning the team will not change, but he thinks that he cannot reach the team championship without exceeding 200 victories in the United States and Japan. He’d better get 200 wins sooner than later during the season,” he said. 

He also showed his will to participate in the World Baseball Classic (WBC), which will be held in March. Tanaka, who was included in the 50-man preliminary list for the Japanese national team, said, “I hope I am selected as much as I am a candidate,” and “I will do my best in any role. I am preparing enough to be called.” 

On the 6th, the Japanese national team first announced 12 representative players, including Shohei Ohtani (LA Angels). Tanaka said, “A lot of great players have been selected, but personally, Yu Darvish (San Diego) has the biggest presence. It has been like that since I was young,” he said, showing his will to work with Darvish as a national team once again following the 2008 Beijing Olympics and 2009 WBC.

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