Rays announce Yoshitomo Tsutsugo signing


FILE – In this March 15, 2017, file photo, Japan’s Yoshitomo Tsutsugo watches the flight of his solo home-run off Israel’s pitcher Dylan Axelrod in the sixth inning of their second round game at the World Baseball Classic at Tokyo Dome in Tokyo. The Tampa Bay Rays are working to finalize a two-year contract worth about $12 million with Japanese slugger Tsutsugo, a person familiar with the negotiations told The Associated Press. The person spoke on condition of anonymity Friday, Dec. 13, 2019, because the agreement had not been announced. (AP Photo/Shizuo Kambayashi, File)

TAMPA (WFLA) – The Tampa Bay Rays have announced the signing of Japanese free agent third baseman/outfielder Yoshitomo Tsutsugo to a two-year, $12 million contract.

Tsutsugo over the last four seasons, he leads NPB with 139 home runs, batting .293 while ranking among league leaders with 116 doubles (tied for sixth), and 372 RBI (third).

Tsutsugo hit .272 with 24 doubles, 29 home runs, 79 RBI and 88 walks last season. Tsutsugo will become the fourth Japanese-born player in franchise history, following right-handed pitcher Hideo Nomo (2005), infielder Akinori Iwamura (2007-09) and outfielder Hideki Matsui (2012).

Tsutsugo will wear number 25 with the Rays and will hold a press conference Tuesday at Tropicana Field.

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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