Sources: Mariners Never Bid on Hisashi Iwakuma
For a posting fee of a reported $17 million, the A's have 30 days to get the right-handed Iwakuma's name on a contract.
That word came out Monday after it was rumored over the weekend that Seattle had won the bidding to sign him.
Just one problem. According to Major League baseball sources with connections to Japan, the Mariners never bid on Iwakuma. Under the rules, the names of non-winning bidders aren't released, but sometimes names get out.
FoxSports.com, among others, named the Rangers and Mariners as teams who had posted on Iwakuma.
But the Mariners "did not bid on this guy,'' one source said. "They didn't participate.''
Since the process of posting non-free agent Japanese players has come into vogue, the Mariners, who have Japanese ownership, routinely are linked with any player wanting to come out of Japan, and in fact the Mariners are interested more often than not.
But not in this case. Iwakuma, who will be 30 next season, threw 201 innings with a 2.82 ERA for the Tohoku Rakuten Golden Eagles of Japan's Pacific League.
The Mariners scouted him, then decided to pass.
"It was a baseball decision,'' the source said. "It didn't have anything to do with the ownership group.''