Japanese two-way star Shohei Otani reached a 24-hour extension with the MLBPA to reach an agreement with an MLB team that would make him eligible to play in the U.S. in 2018.
Otani, a 23-year-old outfielder and pitcher, has until Tuesday at 8 p.m. ET to reach an agreement with an MLB team after his Japanese club, the Hokkaido Nippon Ham Fighters, post him for $20 million.
Each MLB team can use its international bonus pool money to sign Otani. He would likely earn the league minimum for three seasons before he becomes eligible for arbitration, a process that differs from the long-term deals pitchers like Yu Darvish and Daisuke Matsuzaka signed when they transferred from Japan to the U.S.
Mets GM Sandy Alderson said he would not rule out a pursuit of Otani, however the Mets can offer him a bonus of just $150,000. The Yankees, for example, can offer Otani a $3.5 million bonus.
Otani has played with the Hokkaido Nippon Ham Fighters since 2013. As an outfielder, he has a .286/.358/.500 batting line with 48 home runs and 166 RBIs in 403 games. As a pitcher, he is 42-15 with a 2.52 ERA in 85 games (82 starts).