The internet did what the internet does and it got a story rolling through the Cincinnati Reds social media late this morning that the Reds had agreed to a deal with Japanese outfielder Shogo Akiyama. The deal was reportedly worth 3-years and “more than $15M”.
Within the original tweet that got things rolling was a picture of a newspaper that apparently had the details – though, since I don’t know how to read or speak Japanese, I remained skeptical given that the paper in question could have been more National Enquirer instead of Cincinnati Enquirer. No one else was reporting the deal had been struck. Even the claimed cited source, Nikkan Sports, did not have anything online – either on their website or on their social media.
But eventually, about two hours later, Nikkan Sports did put the article up on their website. Shortly after that, American journalists began to come in with their reporting that the deal indeed was not yet complete. Jon Heyman of MLB Network was first, noting that the bidding had reached $20M plus for 3 years, but that the Cincinnati Reds were in front and working hard.
Bobby Nightengale of the Cincinnati Enquirer checked in a minute later noting the Nikkan Sports report, but said that a source indicated that the deal was not finalized yet.
A Japanese news outlet is reporting that Akiyama will sign with the #Reds. One source says nothing is finalized yet, but Reds have been optimistic about their chances to sign him. https://t.co/oK8rLs9Bl4
— Bobby Nightengale (@nightengalejr) December 30, 2019
And right now, that’s where we sit. A report out of Japan from four hours ago that the two sides had reached a deal, while two reports stateside that indicate that the deal isn’t done and is for more than the $15M reported this morning.
Just as I was ready to hit publish, Jon Morosi of MLB Network tweeted that the Reds are close to signing Shogo Akiyama to a 3-year deal. To use the best part of Jurassic Park: Hold onto your butts.
— Jon Morosi (@jonmorosi) December 30, 2019