OSAKA – The Kintetsu Buffaloes will release slugger Tuffy Rhodes after the Pacific League club failed to reach an agreement with him in talks for a multiyear contract by the end of the month.
Rhodes, who has played for the Osaka-based club for eight years, was removed from the team’s roster as of the deadline on Sunday and is likely to join the Yomiuri Giants of the Central League on a multiyear deal.
The 35-year-old former Boston Red Sox outfielder will officially be off the Buffaloes’ team as of Tuesday when a list of players returning for next season is made public.
Comments from Rhodes were not available.
Kintetsu teammate and friend Norihiro Nakamura said he was sorry to see Rhodes go.
“It’s really a shame but it’s his life,” Nakamura said. “Everyone has different ways of thinking, but as one pro baseball player to another, I’d like him to do his best wherever he decides to play.”
According to reports, Rhodes’ agent was asking for a deal of two or more years carrying an annual salary of $5 million (about 550 million yen), while the Buffaloes’ counteroffer was a single-year deal worth 440 million yen plus incentives.
Rhodes claimed the RBI title twice and is the co-holder of the single-season home-run record of 55.
In a time of both misinformation and too much information, quality journalism is more crucial than ever.
By subscribing, you can help us get the story right.