May 9, 2013; Houston, TX, USA; Los Angeles Angels hat and glove on the bench against the Houston Astros in the second inning at Minute Maid Park. Mandatory Credit: Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports

Los Angeles Angels looking at signing Japanese pitcher Masahiro Tanaka

The Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim are in the midst of another dreadful, costly season. But with all-world talent on their roster, there’s reason for optimism every Spring, a Spring would could see the Angels sign Japanese pitcher Masahiro Tanaka.

According to the Los Angeles Times, the Angels have been scouting the Japanese arm for quite a while and have interest in trying to sign the 24-year-old arm, who is currently 21-0 with a 1.24 ERA for the Rakuten Golden Eagles of Japan’s Pacific League.

The Angels, who beat the Oakland Athletics, 12-1, Monday night, had a scout in Japan last week to watch Masahiro Tanaka pitch, and they are considering a run at the undefeated Rakuten Eagles right-hander, whom scouts project as a No. 2 or No. 3 starter in the major leagues.

The 6-foot-2, 215-pound Tanaka, who features a 94-mph fastball, sharp slider and a superb split-fingered fastball, won’t come cheap. If the Eagles, as expected, post Tanaka, it could cost a major league team $25 million or more just to obtain the rights to negotiate a deal with him.

It’s a pretty high posting price, especially for an arm that many feel won’t be more than a second or third starter, but the Angels are one of the few teams who can afford him – if they so choose.

Tags: Los Angeles Angels Masahiro Tanaka

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