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Report: Blue Jays Are Favorites to Win Yu Darvish Negotiating Rights

LOS ANGELES - MARCH 22: Pitcher Yu Darvish #11 of Japan celebrates after striking out Adam Dunn #17 of the United States to win the semifinal game of the 2009 World Baseball Classic on March 22, 2009 at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles, California. Japan defeated the United States 9-4. (Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images)

Before Wednesday's deadline, the Yankees reportedly placed a bid for the rights to negotiate with Japanese pitcher Yu Darvish, though their bid was said to be "modest." Meanwhile, a handful of other teams (like the Blue Jays, Rangers, and Cubs) were thought to have heavy interest in Darvish, and and today, the Post reports that the Jays are "the favorites" to win the negotiating rights. George A. King III reports Toronto's bid was a monster one — more than $40 million and possibly close to $50 million. (As has already been pointed out elsewhere today, spending that kind of money on someone outside the organization would be a departure from how Toronto has done business in recent years.) And remember: That's just the price to negotiate with him. If the Jays are indeed the high bidder, they'd still need to work out a contract with the pitcher, driving the total cost even higher. Darvish's Japanese club, the Hokkaido Nippon-Ham Fighters, has been given the amount of the high bid (but not the identity of the bidder), and has until 5 p.m. EST Tuesday to decide whether to accept it. In the meantime, the Yankees' quiet off-season continues. [NYP]

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Photo: Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images