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[1/25/2014] Masahiro Tanaka to wear the number nineteen with the New York Yankees

by on Jan.25, 2014 @ 12:37 pm, under MLB

The latest on Masahiro Tanaka, from Saturday, January 25, 2014.

  • The Yankees announced that Tanaka was assigned the number nineteen. [MLB.com 1/24/2014] ... Tanaka's former manager and mentor, Katsuya Nomura, wore the number nineteen during parts of his career and when he managed the Rakuten Eagles.  Nomura also thought double-digit numbers that added up to ten were good luck (1+9 = 10). [Sponichi 1/24/2014]
  • Tanaka's "signature" from when he was a fifth year elementary school student was found in Koyaike Park in his home town of Itami, Hyogo.  The signature was found on the back of a two tags used during a PTA event in 1999.  The tags are about twelve centimeters long and twenty-three centimeters wide.  One tag was on a dogwood tree, the other on an ash.  On the back of each, written using a white pen, Koyanosato Shogakko Tanaka Masahiro.  The tags have been removed from the trees out of concern they might disappear.  One tag will be put on display at the Itami City Museum of Insects beginning on the 27th and the other at the Itami Public Library beginning on the 28th. [Nikkan Sports 1/25/2014]
  • According to a report by ZakZak, Rakuten Eagles' Owner Hiroshi Mikitani may have been doing his best to keep Tanaka in Sendai until the very last minute.  There are also rumors that he may have sought help from Yomiuri Chairman Tsuneo Watanabe -- to start a campaign to shift public opinion by using the Yomiuri media group. [ZakZak 1/25/2014]
  • Tanaka's former Rakuten teammates Manabu Mima, Shinichiro Koyama, and Ryohei Isaka wore Yankee caps during workouts at Kobo Stadium on Friday.  Mima purchased the caps (five of them at about 5,000 yen a pop) the day before. ...  The Eagles have reportedly given up on holding a farewell ceremony for Tanaka because of scheduling problems. [Sponichi 1/25/2014]
  • After taxes, Tanaka's contract will probably be worth around sixty-eight million US dollars.  He could have saved about twelve million if he signed with Arizona or Chicago. [Americans for Tax Reform 1/23/2014 via Sponichi 1/25/2014]
  • Tanaka might not leave for the United States until some time around February 10.  He is expected to continue his workouts at Kobo Stadium until then.  He will not have anyone to work out with in February since Rakuten players will be in Okinawa for spring camp.  Yoshiki Sato could step in and help. [Daily Sports 1/25/2014]
  • Tanaka tweeted that he did not set up @TanakaEnglish. [Daily Sports 1/25/2014]
  • UPDATE @ 5:04pm - Tanaka worked out at Kobo Stadium today.  With regards to his uniform number, he told reports he had no special feelings for the number eighteen and had no particular reason for picking the number nineteen. [Daily Sports 1/25/2014]
  • UPDATE @ 6:26pm - ZakZak's Yoshifumi Ejiri notes that fans in Japan might not have a chance to see Tanaka pitch in the next WBC because of his decision to sign with the Yankees. [ZakZak 1/25/2014]