Print and Go Back ESPN.com: Baseball [Print without images]

Thursday, February 11, 2010
Hisanori Takahashi, Mets agree to deal

By Jerry Crasnick
ESPN.com

The New York Mets have reached agreement on a one-year, minor league contract with Japanese pitcher Hisanori Takahashi.

The deal will pay Takahashi a base salary of $1 million, with the opportunity to earn an additional $2 million in performance bonuses, the source said.

Takahashi, a 34-year-old left-hander, posted a 79-66 record in 10 seasons with the Tokyo Yomiuri Giants. He attracted interest from the Boston Red Sox, Baltimore Orioles, Los Angeles Dodgers, San Francisco Giants and San Diego Padres.

Takahashi had a 2.94 ERA in 25 games last year, while striking out 126 batters in 144 innings. He was regarded by many teams as a swingman, with the ability to both start and relieve. Takahashi is listed at 5-foot-10, 172 pounds and relies on finesse, with a screwball as his feature pitch.

Takahashi is the second Japanese pitcher to sign with the Mets this offseason. Reliever Ryota Igarashi signed a two-year, $3 million deal with New York in December.

The Mets also agreed Thursday to minor league contracts with first baseman Mike Jacobs, who began his major league career with the Mets in 2005 and would get a $900,000, one-year contract if added to the 40-man roster, and catcher Shawn Riggans. The 29-year-old Riggans appeared in just seven games in the majors for Tampa Bay and 26 in the minors last season because of right shoulder tendinitis.

Jerry Crasnick is a senior baseball writer for ESPN.com. Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.