Tokyo Swallows offer record 7-year contract to Premier12 star Tetsuto Yamada

Tokyo Swallows offer record 7-year contract to Premier12 star Tetsuto Yamada
20/11/2020
The slugging second baseman, nicknamed 'The Mike Trout of Japan', hit a game-changing three-run home run for the Japanese National Team in the 2019 Premier12 final against Korea.

The Tokyo Yakult Swallows are ready to make an offer to free-agent second baseman Tetsuto Yamada in order to keep him in Nippon Professional Baseball (NPB).

Yamada turned down a multi-year extension by the Swallows after the 2019 season and was given a ¥70 million (approximately US$ 674,000) increase that made him the highest-paid player in the history of the Swallows.

Reportedly, the new offer is a seven-year contract worth ¥ 4.5 billion, roughly $43.3 million US dollars.

Many Major League Baseball (MLB) clubs have reportedly showed interest in the slugging second baseman, who is known in the United States as The Mike Trout of Japan.

Yamada is the only player in the history of NPB who has registered more than one season (2015, 2016 and 2018) with a .300 batting average and 30 or more home runs and stolen bases.

Showcasing both power and speed, he's recorded 219 home runs and 203 stolen bases since his NPB debut in 2011, while his career batting average is a solid .290. He was named the Central League MVP in 2015 and appeared in five NPB All-Star Games.

Yamada represented the National Baseball Team of Japan -- 'Samurai Japan' in both editions of the WBSC Premier12.

He was the starting second baseman for the bronze medal team in 2015. He didn't commit an error and had eight hits, including two home runs, over 26 at-bats, for a .308 batting average.

He appeared in all 2019 Premier12 games for champions Japan, starting five times at first base and one time at second. His hitting performance was highlighted by a three-run home run in the final against Korea.