Most baseball sources seem to agree that Masahiro Tanaka is a really good player. He may be Darvish-level, he may not be. But he’s 24 years old, dominant, and headed for the MLB posting process. Every team in baseball would love to have him on their team. A lot of teams, including the Yankees, are planning on bidding on him through the posting process. Instead of a more efficient auction, Japanese teams make sure the bidding is blind, in order to force prices up. Every team interested in Tanaka’s services is right now deciding how much they value exclusive negotiating rights with the young star.
Assuming every team values Tanaka’s talent the same (who knows what each scout is saying), the Yankees should value exclusive negotiating rights higher than any other team. Here’s why:
Higher Value per Marginal Win
In a purely profit-seeking world, teams value marginal wins at the amount of revenue each brings in. So, a team with a smaller revenue base (like, the Rays) gets a smaller revenue increase for each marginal win that they add.…