Matsui, Yankees sign 4-year, $52M pact

Nov. 16, 2005 at 9:52 AM
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NEW YORK, Nov. 16 (UPI) -- Yankees left fielder Hideki Matsui has agreed to a four-year, $52 million contract that makes him the highest paid Japanese player in Major League Baseball.

Matsui and New York reached agreement Tuesday, two hours before the midnight deadline that would have allowed him to test the free agent market.

However, there was little doubt that the Yankees would resign the 31-year-old who hit .305 last season and has driven in 100 runs in his three seasons with New York.

"Hideki's heart has always been with the Yankees, and this has always been where he wanted to play and hopefully finish his career," agent Arn Tellem told The New York Times. "He hopes to retire in a Yankee uniform."

The Yankees scheduled a news conference Wednesday on the pact that makes Matsui the top-paid Japanese player ahead of Seattle's Ichiro Suzuki, who makes $11 million a year.

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