When Major League Baseball’s owners tried to curtail overspending by creating a third tier of the luxury tax, it was immediately nicknamed the Cohen Tax. Steven A. Cohen was the founder of the Cohen Tax. MetsI took it as a compliment.

“It’s better than a bridge being named after you,” He said it at the time.

Cohen, a billionaire who is the richest owner in baseball, vowed that the tax would not stop him from spending, and he has proved that in a wild off-season in which he has followed up his team’s 101-win season by spending big on Justin Verlander, Brandon Nimmo and Edwin Díaz. Saturday saw the continuation of the spending spree, when Edwin Diaz and Brandon Nimmo purchased Mets They came to an agreement with Kodai Senga, a right-handed starter Japan’s Fukuoka SoftBank Hawks, on Contract worth $75 Million for five years

Senga Slot in as the Mets’ No. 3 starter. His contract is still in the works, but was confirmed by an individual familiar with the negotiations. on condition of anonymity will propel the team further into the Cohen Tax. This is in addition to the other tiers that make up the luxury tax. Mets would currently be expected to add around $80 million to the team’s 2023 payroll, for a combined outlay of more than $400 million — by far the most total dollars spent on A M.L.B. team.

With Senga29 Mets Buy in on a free-agent ace who has long desired a chance to prove himself against M.L.B.’s batters with his “ghost fork,” This is a changeup version of the split-finger fastball, which tumbles as it approaches a plate. His signature pitch is complemented by a fastball that averaged 101.9 miles an hour last season.

In 11 Nippon Professional Baseball season with the Hawks Senga His E.R.A. was 2.59 and he was 87-44. He was 11-6 in 2022 with a 1.94 ERA. He had 156 strikeouts over 144 innings. Like the Mets’ co-aces, Verlander and Max Scherzer, Senga He has a championship pedigree having been the No. The Hawks were the No. 1 starter as they won four consecutive Japan Series titles, from 2017 to 2020.

Senga The Hawks turned down the request to be placed after the 2019 and 2020 seasons. They are the only Nippon Professional Baseball team that hasn’t posted a player in the current system. Instead, Senga He was forced to wait until reaching international free agency. This means that he is now eligible for the Mets To sign him, you were not required by the Hawks to pay a fee.

According to reports, there were several clubs interested in this topic. Senga. He is a longtime fan of Yu Darvish. Yu Darvish was a starter with the San Diego Padres and also began his career as a Nippon Professional Baseball player. Because Senga Darvish and Darvish have been together in training during off-seasons in Japan. There was speculation that the Padres may have the inside track to sign Darvish.

“I like him,” Mets Buck Showalter, manager, stated that Senga Last week at the San Diego winter meeting, I noted that it was difficult for Japanese pitchers to be projected due to their increased workload. They pitch every fifth day in Japan, instead of once a week in Japan. In Japan, the size of the ball is smaller.

But “a good pitcher is a good pitcher,” Showalter said. “You’re always thinking about the load of pitching every fifth day compared to the other one, but they said that about some really good Japanese pitchers that came over here and did well.

“So he’s a good one. We’ve talked with him. And he’s impressive. You can see why they think so highly of him. I enjoyed our little talk with him.”

Senga He threw a no-hitter for the Hawks in 2019, and also pitched for Japan at the 2020 Olympics. He worked a scoreless sixth innings in relief in Japan’s gold medal game, where Japan defeated the United States, 2 to 1.

The primary concern of Senga His durability is his key concern. He suffered a shoulder injury that kept him out of the game for much of 2014. Since then, he has experienced occasional elbow soreness. He has only twice thrown over 150 innings in a single season, partly because of this. His 2022 144-inning season was his longest since 2017.

Showalter compared the routine shift from Japan to M.L.B. Showalter compared the routine change from Japan to M.L.B. “Friday night pitcher” In college baseball. “They’re pitching maybe once a week,” He said. “All of a sudden you’re asked to post up every fifth day. Now, they’re throwing 140, 150 pitches in that once-a-week thing, so can you shorten them up at 90 and 100 and have them pitch every fifth day? And OK, what if you’re wrong? That’s the thing you’re always considering.”

The team was not deterred by any doubts Mets They are continuing their spending spree, and have given $359 million to five agents free of charge. Senga, Verlander (two years, $86.6 million), Nimmo (eight years, $162 million), the left-hander José Quintana (two years, $26 million) and reliever David Robertson (one year, $10 million). The Mets also extended Díaz (five years, $102 million) on This is the largest contract ever offered to a relief pitcher.

The off-season is yet to include an impact bat. Mets You may not be able to spend it.