Kikuchi reaches deal with Lions

SHIZUKUISHI, Iwate Pref. (Kyodo) Hanamaki Higashi High School left-hander Yusei Kikuchi agreed to terms with the Seibu Lions on Saturday.

The 18-year-old top prospect will receive a signing bonus of ¥100 million plus performance bonuses of up to ¥50 million. His annual salary was set at ¥15 million for the first year.

“Playing professional baseball has been my dream and goal since I started to play baseball 10 years ago. I look forward to being on that stage,” Kikuchi said after talks with Seibu officials in a hotel.

“I want to be a pitcher people talk about from generation to generation,” he added.

Seibu won the rights to negotiate a contract with Kikuchi in the Japanese baseball draft last month.