The Boston Red Sox signed Japanese outfielder Masataka Yoshida to a five-year deal worth $90 million on Wednesday. He becomes the highest-paid Japanese baseball player and comes with a lot of potential to a team that certainly needs it. Boston will also pay Yoshida’s $15.4 million posting price back to the Orix Buffaloes in the Nippon Professional Baseball (NPB). Yoshida was posted Wednesday morning as an official free agent, and the Red Sox signed him within 11 hours.
Yoshida had spent seven years in the NPB. The 29-year-old lefty batter is a career .327 hitter with 133 home runs and 467 RBI. His power is impressive, considering that he is 5 ft. 8 and doesn’t have the typical build of a power hitter in the majors. Yoshida has above average ability to put the bat on the ball and rarely strikes out. He must have a lot of upside as the team has already made him their second-highest paid player, behind only Trevor Story. It remains to be seen how long it will take Yoshida to adjust to pitching in the major leagues here in the United States, but he is expected to be a contributor early on in the 2023 baseball season.