Yoshinobu Yamamoto Contract Details: Salary Not Deferred By Dodgers

The Los Angeles Dodgers continued their aggressive approach this offseason as they reportedly signed Yoshinobu Yamamoto to a 12-year, $325 million contract on Thursday night.

The record-breaking deal ends a highly competitive bidding war for the Nippon Professional Baseball ace, and he’ll ultimately team up with fellow Team Japan star Shohei Ohtani.

Yamamoto was the top arm on the free agent market, but chose the Dodgers among the top remaining suitors that also included the New York Mets and New York Yankees.

The total value of Yamamoto’s contract, including the posting fee, is just north of $375 million. While the Dodgers made a lot of headlines with the unique structure of Ohtani’s deal, Yamamoto’s contract does not include deferred salary, according to Jeff Passan of ESPN:

Unlike Ohtani’s deal, in which $680 million is deferred 10 years out, Yamamoto’s contract does not contain any deferred money.

Ohtani’s contract deferrals allowed for the Dodgers to make this level of signing, and Yamamoto’s deal fits the profile of a blue-chip player.

Yamamoto was stellar this past season with the Orix Buffaloes, going 17-6 with a 1.21 ERA over 164 innings while tallying 176 strikeouts.

He became one of the most coveted free agents in MLB history due to his talent and age on the open market at just 25-years-old.

What’s next for Dodgers after signing Yoshinobu Yamamoto?

The current Dodgers roster has a few remaining areas in which the front office could continue to address before Spring Training. Although they aren’t pressing needs, there lies a fair amount of uncertainty with their left field position.

The Dodgers could dive into the trade market for a reliable outfield option who could play every day. Max Kepler of the Minnesota Twins is an intriguing target on a solid contract and just one name to keep an eye on.

L.A. could also look to the free agent market, where Tommy Pham, Teoscar Hernandez and Randal Grichuk and Michael Brantley are among the top options available.

Yamamoto fills a massive hole and one that takes pressure off of the rotation behind him, but the club could still use one more piece in their rotation as well.

Dodgers president of baseball operations Andrew Friedman could use a few of his top prospects to go out and acquire Chicago White Sox ace Dylan Cease, who has two years remaining on his current contract, or another top starter.

That type of trade would leave no doubt that the Dodgers front office isn’t content with how the rotation was left out to dry in the 2023 postseason when Lance Lynn tossed live batting practice in a Game 3 loss.

That is more unlikely at this point, however, and they will probably just add a depth piece to their rotation who can eat innings.

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