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Hisashi Iwakuma re-signs with Rakuten Golden Eagles

Hisashi Iwakuma

In this Sept. 11, 2010 photo Rakuten Eagles right-hander Hisashi Iwakuma pitches against the Orix Buffaloes at Kleenex Stadium in Sendai, northeastern Japan. Iwakuma has been given permission by his team to sign with a Major League Baseball club. The Rakuten Eagles of Japan’s Pacific League said Monday Oct. 4, 2010, that the 29-year-old right-hander is free to pursue a contract with a major league team through the posting system. (AP Photo/Kyodo News) ** JAPAN OUT, MANDATORY CREDIT, FOR COMMERCIAL USE ONLY IN NORTH AMERICA **


The A’s won exclusive negotiating rights for Japanese right-hander Hisashi Iwakuma earlier this winter, but they were unwilling to meet his lofty contract demands and the 29-year-old has now re-signed with the Rakuten Golden Eagles of Nippon Professional Baseball. This according to Jason Coskrey of The Japan Times.

Iwakuma turned in a quality 2.81 ERA over 201 innings in 2010 for the Golden Eagles, equally strong numbers in 2009, and he had a career year in 2008 when he posted a 21-4 record and 1.87 ERA to win the Pacific League MVP.

He should draw a ton of interest next offseason if he again tries to test the MLB free agent waters and he may find a club that is more willing to pay him big money.

Iwakuma was asking for a salary of $11-$12 million per season in his negotiations with the A’s. Because of the pricey $19.1 million posting fee, Billy Beane and Co. were only willing to offer a four-year deal worth a total of $15.25 million. That fee has since been returned.