• Kyodo

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Hideki Matsui dodged the media on his arrival in New York on Thursday ahead of the official signing of a three-year, $21 million free-agent deal with the New York Yankees.

Around 150 reporters waiting at Newark Liberty International Airport in New Jersey were left disappointed as the 28-year-old left the airport with Yankees’ officials via a separate exit.

Matsui is scheduled to undergo a physical examination Friday before the Yankees introduce the slugging outfielder at a press conference Tuesday following the signing of the deal earlier in the day.

The Yankees announced an agreement with Matsui on Dec. 20 after five major league teams, which also included the New York Mets, Boston Red Sox, Baltimore Orioles, Los Angeles Dodgers, moved to acquire the three-time Central League Most Valuable Player.

Matsui became a free agent to pursue a career in the major leagues after 10 seasons with the Yomiuri Giants. He led the Tokyo club to the CL and Japan Series titles in 2002 with 50 homers and 107 RBIs.

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