Orioles passing on Darvish, introducing Wada Thursday (updated)

The Orioles are trying to become big players in the international market, but they won’t pursue Japanese pitcher Yu Darvish.

The Orioles will let the 5 p.m. deadline pass today without posting a bid, leaving other teams to fight for his services.

Jeff Passan of Yahoo Sports! has estimated that it could cost a team in the $30 million to $70 million range to win the rights to negotiate with the 25-year-old Darvish. Then there’s the matter of getting his signature on a contract.

Meanwhile, the Orioles have reached agreement on a two-year deal for Japanese left-hander Tsuyoshi Wada that’s worth a reported $8.15 million and includes a $5 million option for 2014. He’s taking a physical and most likely will be introduced to the local media on Thursday.

Keep in mind that pitcher Chong Tae-Hyon was supposed to be introduced at a press conference after taking his physical, but it never happened because he decided to stay in Korea. However, there are no anticipated holdups with Wada, 30, who went 16-5 with a 1.53 ERA and 168 strikeouts in 184 2/3 innings for the Fukuoka SoftBank Hawks.

The Orioles could make the announcement later today or wait until Thursday morning.

Wada will be the first Japanese player to sign with the Orioles since Koji Uehara.

Update: The Orioles made the Wada signing official. They’ll introduce him to the local media Thursday at 4 p.m.

Wada will wear No. 18.


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