The NY Mets have agreed to basic terms with Ryota Igarashi.
Arn Tellem is quote by Sponichi as saying, "I think you can now consider Igarashi a member of the Mets. We're just working on finalizing the deal now.
Incidentally, NikkanSports is also carrying the same story.
=== UPDATE 1:07pm JST
Bart Hubbuch, of the NY Post, has confirmed that the Mets indeed have an agreement with Igarashi.
BTW: all three of the majors sports sites in Japan are now carrying the same story.
Sponichi - 10:05am
Nikkan Sports - 10:20am
Sanspo - 10:31am
And it seems that the original source was Kyodo News.
=== UPDATE 12/18/2009 9:16am JST
It's a done deal now.
Igarashi gets a 2-year deal worth about $3M.
And back when he mentioned that there was an offer from a team he wanted to go to, he was apparently talking about the NY Mets. It seems he wanted to play pitch in NY and wanted to play alongside Francisco Rodriguez.
=== UPDATE 10:01am JST
Seems he'll be making $1.25M in his first year and $1.75M in his second year.
=== UPDATE 12/19/2009 5:43pm JST
Igarashi can earn an extra $500,000 (45M yen) in incentives over the two years.
Another report mentions that he'll
...earn extra money for every 5 games he appears in over 45
...also earn extra money for awards won
...have a personal translator
...get round trip airplane tickets between Japan and the US
He was also apparently offered the number 53 but turned it down because he didn't want Jerry Manuel to have to give it up for him.
=== UPDATE 12/23/2009 11:13am JST
Seems like you'll be used as a set-up man...
I haven't been told that directly, but I am aware that they want me to pitch in the 7th and 8th innings.
Your knowledge of the Majors...
I tried to watch as many games as I could when I was in Japan.
On the differences in the mound and ball...
I'm playing catch with an MLB ball right now in Arizona and haven't really noticed a big difference. As for the mound, I've always liked them harder since I started playing in Japan.
Your uniform number?
It hasn't been decided yet.
On your contract being signed so quickly...
I'm just relieved it got done before the end of the year. My training methods are also a little different now. I feel I'm now in a good place to continue my training in preparation for the Spring training.