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Dodgers have reached out to Japanese right-hander Masahiro Tanaka

January 08, 2014|By Dylan Hernandez
  • Japanese star pitcher Masahiro Tanaka poses with his grand prix trophy.
Japanese star pitcher Masahiro Tanaka poses with his grand prix trophy. (Koji Sasahara / Associated…)

After formally announcing that the Dodgers have signed Manager Don Mattingly to a contract extension, General Manager Ned Colletti said Wednesday he has reached out to the agent of prized Japanese right-hander Masahiro Tanaka.

Tanaka, who is on the radar screens of a number of teams, is represented by Casey Close, who is also the agent for Clayton Kershaw and Zack Greinke.

“Obviously, Casey and I go back quite a while,” Colletti said.

Colletti described the conversations as preliminary in nature.

“They’re in the feeling-out process,” Colletti said. “They’re trying to learn a lot about different cities, different markets, different teams, how teams are constructed. It’s a big decision for the player too.

“We’ll continue and see where it goes.”

Tanaka is expected to a sign a contract worth more than $100 million. In addition, the team that lands him will owe $20 million to his Japanese league team, the Rakuten Golden Eagles.

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