masahiro tanakaFor all reasonable intents and purposes, we have treated the race for Masahiro Tanaka to be down to just three teams: the Cubs, the Yankees, and the Dodgers. There are good reasons to believe that’s a reality, but it hasn’t strictly been the case, with the Diamondbacks and White Sox, at a minimum, having also made offers to Tanaka. There are also persisting whispers about the Mariners, Astros, and Angels.

Tanaka’s decision – and official signing – must be completed by Friday at 4pm CT. If the signing team wants time to have its own doctors give him a look, you’d think a decision would be needed at some point today, then some travel, then some doctoring tomorrow, and everything finalized on Friday.

If that’s to be how things proceed, we might start hearing about teams alerting the world that they’re out.

And so it is with the Diamondbacks, who have always wanted Tanaka, but are now out of the race, according to a source of Steve Gilbert’s. His source isn’t sure if that means Tanaka has selected his team, or if he’s going through a process of elimination. In either case, things are proceeding.

As for how the Diamondbacks proceed now in their pursuit of an elite starting pitcher, we may hear them connected to Jeff Samardzija trade rumors once again, after this all plays out.┬áThe Diamondbacks used up some of their trade chips earlier this Winter in the Mark Trumbo deal, but they still would have the pieces to get someone like Samardzija, if they wanted. I suspect they’ll prefer to go the free agent route to add additional pitching.

  • Blackhawks1963

    There is emerging sense that Tanaka’s selection will be made public by no later than this evening, “American” time. Still seems to me that Mr. and Mrs. Tanaka are trying VERY hard to make the Dodgers work. In my opinion the Tanaka’s overwhelming preference is to play in Los Angeles. Would he take several million dollars less to play in LA? He just might. I also still think that the Yankees are his fallback option. I can imagine the Steinbrenner boys and Cashman are throwing more money onto the fire to distance their offer from the Dodgers.

    • Soda Popinski

      W-W-W-wha… what?!

    • blublud

      So how long have you been friends with the Tanaka’s?

  • BlameHendry

    The medical stuff was done over his visit to LA and if he’s just now eliminating the first of the 5+ teams involved, I have a feeling this will be dragged out all the way to Friday.

    • Austin8466

      The Cubs don’t give a flying f*ck about a physical that took place in LA. When you commit $20 mill or more a year to a player, you want your own doctors to administer the physical. End of story.

  • Austin8466

    If we lose out on Tanaka, I think we should go back to the Garza well. A rotation of Shark, Garza, Wood, Jackson, & Arrieta is very respectable with our improved bullpen situation.

    Garza, by all accounts, was a fantastic teammate and is still a guy under 30 that we could lock up for 5-6 years.


    • Blackhawks1963

      That’s false. One, Garza was widely viewed as an idiot “Nick Swisher” type teammate. He wore out his welcome with the Cubs. In same way the Tampa Bay Rays got sick of his act. Two, Garza has major health warning signs.

      Garza to the Cubs ain’t happening. Thank God for that.

      • Austin8466

        From everything I’ve read on here, he was a great teammate. Do you have any story you can link on here to show me? TIA

        If not Garza, then I hope we go hard after Jimenez. We need another front-end starter in our rotation.

        • Blackhawks1963

          Theo has strongly telegraphed that the Cubs are unwilling to cough up a draft pick (in this case a 2nd round pick) to sign any free agent. That rules out Jimenez and Santana.

      • Edwin

        Did his teammates actually say that? It seemed to me that was just more the typical rumor mill stuff that gets said when a guy gets traded, the whole “we thought he was a jerk anyway” line. Especially with fans being frustrated that the Cubs weren’t able to trade him the season before for a killer package, so they decided to take it out on Garza personally.

        • cooter

          I just remember him being on the DL most of the time. Yah, when healthy he pitches good.

    • BlameHendry

      Yeah I don’t understand the big anti-Garza sentiment. I mean I kind of get the same feeling others have that the FO has something against Garza in a subtle way, but I don’t understand why. The guy was never a trouble-maker and a had (seemingly) a great work ethic and pitched VERY well for the Cubs this year before being traded. Maybe Garza was pissed about being traded and refuses to talk to the Cubs anymore? He’s not an ace, but a very solid #2/#3 and I had fun watching him pitch.

      • BlameHendry

        Oh and also (really need an edit button…) – no draft pick to give up, and the health concerns seem to be a thing of the past now. After returning, he was strong all the way til the end of the season with good velocity.

    • TommyK

      Don’t you still have to score runs to win baseball games? Because, have you seen our outfield?

  • CubFanSince…

    Tanaka to Yankees, tweets Ken Rosenthal.

  • Having Faith

    Tanaka to the Yankees 7 years, $155 million according to @Ken_Rosenthal

  • cjdubbya

    I’m thinking that we could see another big day like that one a week or so before the Winter Meetings once Tanaka announces his decision. I mean, there’s been 6-7 teams in the mix for Tanaka, and I’m thinking the best three guys are Garza/Jimenez/Santana? Should be a fun weekend, I think.

  • 26.2CubsFan

    I’m having trouble believing this theory about a signing team doing a physical before finalizing. If that were the case, then you create a scenario where a team’s doctors raise a red flag, there isn’t enough time for another team to get in their review, and he doesn’t sign anywhere. There’s no way a $140million+ deal gets left to chance like that. The fact that we’re this late in the process and still no deal means all parties involved are content with the physical done in LA.

  • AA Correspondant

    7 Years


  • CubFanSince…

    I’m not sure, could the Cubs not beat that offer or ultimately Tanaka refused more money to play in NY?

  • cubzfan23

    Tanaka to yankees… who would of guessed