A few weeks ago, talks between the Oakland A's and Japanese pitcher Hisashi Iwakuma broke off. And Monday night, up against the signing deadline, Mychael Urban reports that the deal is officially dead.
The A's had a 30-day window during which they had to reach a contract agreement with the 29-year-old would-be import. That 30-day window expired Monday night, with no resolution. The A's and Iwakuma's agent haven't even been in significant conversation for a long time ever since the extent of their differences of opinion became clear. The A's were modeling their contract offers after the low one signed by Colby Lewis, while Iwakuma and his agent were modeling their contract proposals after the higher ones signed by Daisuke Matsuzaka and Hiroki Kuroda.
Because no agreement was reached, the A's will get their posting fee back, and Iwakuma will return to Japan for the 2011 season. After the year, Iwakuma will be able to come over to North America as a free agent, and he would not have to go through the posting process again.