TOKYO — The Seibu Lions will begin the posting process for left-handed pitcher Yusei Kikuchi on Dec. 3 so that he can negotiate with teams in Major League Baseball.
The posting period begins on Dec. 5, and Kikuchi will have 30 days to sign a contract with a major league team. The Lions would then receive a posting fee based on the dollar amount of the pitcher’s contract. If he fails to reach a deal within 30 days, he remains with the Lions.
Kikuchi attended a Seibu team event on Friday and told reporters the posting process would begin on Dec. 3.
Since Kikuchi cannot file for international free agency until 2020, he needed Seibu’s approval in order to use the posting system to move to the majors.
Kikuchi has a 73-46 career record with a 2.77 ERA in Nippon Professional Baseball. He went 14-4 this year and struck out 153 batters in 163-2/3 innings.
All postings by NPB teams must occur between Nov. 1 and Dec. 5, with a 30-day negotiating window to follow.
Under the posting system, a Japanese team posting a player to the majors will receive a fee based on an agreed percentage of the value of the contract, bonuses and incentives.
The fee will be 20 per cent of the first $25 million of a major league contract, including earned bonuses and options. The percentage drops to 17.5 per cent of the next $25 million and 15 per cent of any amount over $50 million.