Brewers win Norichika Aoki bid rights
TOKYO -- The Milwaukee Brewers have won the right to negotiate a contract with Japanese center fielder Norichika Aoki.
Aoki's team, the Yakult Swallows, said Sunday it had accepted the Brewers' bid of $2.5 million under the posting system.
Kahrl: What To Expect Of Aoki?
At one point Norichika Aoki was considered "the next Ichiro," but his declining performance raises questions about his potential in Milwaukee, writes Christina Kahrl. Blog
The Brewers have 30 days to work out a deal with the 29-year-old Aoki, a three-time Central League batting champion.
Aoki batted .292 with four home runs and 44 RBIs in 144 games for the Swallows this season. He has a career batting average of .329 in eight seasons, all with Yakult.
Aoki is the only player in Japanese professional baseball to have had two 200-hit seasons.
But left fielder Ryan Braun, the NL's reigning MVP, is facing a possible 50-game suspension after a positive test for performance-enhancing drugs. The four-time All-Star maintains the result was a false positive and vows to fight it.
The Brewers are anchored in right field by Corey Hart.
Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.