Last week, Cubs manager Rick Renteria indicated he’d be willing to learn a “little Japanese” if the team was able to sign highly sought after free agent pitcher Masahiro Tanaka. Wednesday morning Tanaka signed a seven-year, $155 million contract with the Yankees, meaning Renteria wouldn’t have to come through on his grand cultural commitment.
“Whew, that was close,” said Renteria. “I was afraid I’d have to learn a few dozen Japanese phrases and that would have been a total hassle.”
Renteria was reminded learning the language might be helpful since the Cubs do have Japanese pitcher Kyuji Fujikawa on the roster.
“Oh that guy?” asked Renteria. “I only need one phrase ready for him: ‘Don’t give up a grand slam.’ Hopefully I only need that a few times this season before we cut him.”