RHP Kohei Arihara, Texas Rangers reach 2-year deal

Japanese right-hander Kohei Arihara has signed a two-year deal with the Texas Rangers, the team revealed Saturday.

The deal is in the $6 million to $7 million range, sources told ESPN’s Jeff Passan.

The 28-year-old was 8-9 with a 3.46 ERA in 20 starts for Hokkaido during the pandemic-shortened 2020 season in Japan. He led the Pacific League with three complete matches and was second in innings with 132⅔.

“The addition of Kohei Arihara strengthens the depth in our starting rotation,” Rangers president of baseball operations Jon Daniels said. “He has had success in Japan over the last six years with a breakout season in 2019.”

Arihara, the Pacific League’s rookie of the year in 2015, had a career-high 15 victories in 2019, tied for the overall lead in Japan, and was second in ERA at 2.46 in 24 starts. He is 60-50 with a 3.74 ERA in 129 career appearances, including 125 starts.

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Arihara would become the eighth native of Japan to appear in a regular-season game for the Rangers.

Yu Darvish (2012-17) and Yoshinori Tateyama (2011-12) also pitched for Hokkaido before joining the Rangers.

“I will continue to work hard in order for me to grow and succeed in this city,”

“I am extremely grateful for the Rangers who gave me an opportunity to play in Major League Baseball,” Arihara said in a statement. “I am truly excited to be able to pitch in front of the Rangers fans at Globe Life Field, and I hope that you will all support me in my journey.”

Arihara said in a statement released by the Rangers on Saturday. “To lead into this, I will make sure to have a good offseason so that I can head into spring training in top condition.”

The Rangers made room for Arihara on the 40-man roster by designating right-hander Art Warren for assignment.

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