This confirms that the Angels will be one of many teams interested in Tanaka. The Yankees, Red Sox, Rangers, and Cubs are four other teams that figure to play heavily in the bidding. All five teams have been known to spend money in the past and will likely give a record posting fee for the right to negotiate Tanaka.
Tanaka, 24, made 27 starts and one relief appearance for the Tohoku Rakuten Golden Eagles in 2013 between the regular and post-season. He finished with a 1.27 ERA and 0.94 WHIP with 183 strikeouts to just 32 walks. He has posted an ERA under 2.00 each of the past three seasons.
Some scouts have compared Tanaka favorably to fellow countryman Yu Darvish, saying that he has more command over his pitches. Tanaka figures to earn Rakuten a posting fee of around $75 million before signing a contract that could likely hit at least $60 million.