The Milwaukee Brewers, who might be in need of an extra outfielder for the first 50 games of 2012, won the bidding process for Yakult Swallows outfielder Norichika Aoki. The Swallows accepted the Brewers' bid of $2.5 million, according to MLB Trade Rumors.
Had Aoki come over after the 2010 season, the bidding might have been more intense:
But offensive statistics dropped dramatically in 2011 across NPB, and Aoki's .292/.358/360 might have seemed a little too Reggie Willits-esque for teams deciding how much to bid. Depending on the contract that's reached, though, it seems like a pretty low-risk, medium-reward move for a team on a budget.
The Brewers now have 30 days to negotiate a contract with Aoki. If they can not reach an agreement, Milwaukee does not have to pay the $2.5 million bid.