MLB Rumors: 3 teams that should pay Yoshinobu Yamamoto’s reported price

The winner of the Yoshinobu Yamamoto sweepstakes is going to need to pay up. These three teams have the money and the need to go all in.

World Baseball Classic Semifinals: Mexico v Japan
World Baseball Classic Semifinals: Mexico v Japan / Eric Espada/GettyImages
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According to Dai Takegami Podziewski of MLB Trade Rumors, Yoshinobu Yamamoto, who threw his second career no-hitter on Sept. 9 also threw it in front of scouts and executives from 12 MLB teams, including Brian Cashman of the New York Yankees.

Yoshinobu Yamamoto is the most accomplished Japanese pitcher to become available since Masahiro Tanaka in 2014. Now, many teams are willing to go into a bidding war to acquire the 25-year-old pitcher in hopes of bolstering their rotations and becoming contenders.

According to Bob Nightengale of USA Today, a possible Yamamoto contract could reach the $160 million range. This would surpass the seven-year, $155 million contract that Masahiro Tanaka signed with the Yankees. That price may limit the number of contenders to sign him but these three teams could use him and have the money to pay up.

3 teams that should pay Yoshinobu Yamamoto: 3. New York Yankees

After failing to make the postseason in 2023, the Yankees have to make a big splash. This is essential for two reasons: one, to secure Brian Cashman's job if he isn't fired after the season, and two, because the fans are demanding it. The Yankees have a history of spending big on Japanese free agents.

The Yankees only have confirmed starters for the 2024 season in Gerrit Cole, Carlos Rodon, and Nestor Cortes if healthy. They have two free-agent pitchers this offseason in Luis Severino and Frankie Montas, both of whom don't bring much to the table.

Yankees could be forced to sign Yamamoto with possible future moves

The Yankees, have called up cheap talent in Anthony Volpe, Austin Wells, and Jasson Dominguez, but they need to commit now and make a giant push for the World Series, or they could lose their only remaining chance to go all the way. The Yankees haven't won a World Series since 2009, and fans are getting tired of excuses.

After the 2024 season, they have a team option for Anthony Rizzo, while Jonathan Loaisiga and Gleyber Torres are set to become free agents. There is also the possibility that Gerrit Cole could opt out of his nine-year, $324 million contract. Anthony Rizzo, Nestor Cortes, and Michael King will become official free agents after the 2025 season.