The Yankees have signed Chien-Ming Wang for $5 million for 2009, avoiding arbitration. Here’s the release:
The New York Yankees announced today that they have signed right-handed pitcher Chien-Ming Wang to a one-year contract for $5 million, avoiding arbitration.
Wang, 28, was 8-2 with a 4.07 ERA in 15 starts for the Yankees in 2008 before being placed on the disabled list on June 17 for the remainder of the season with a mid-foot sprain of the Lisfranc ligament and a partial tear of the peroneal longus tendon in his right foot. He began the season 6-0, including a 5-0 mark in April, and was the Yankees’ Opening Day starter in the final season opener at Yankee Stadium on April 1, defeating Toronto, 3-2.
Despite missing most of the 2008 season, Wang’s 46 wins since 2006 are tied for the third-most in the American League and eighth-most in the Majors. His .754 combined winning percentage over the last three seasons (2006-08) is the second-highest in the Majors behind Boston’s Jon Lester (.771, 27-8). He recorded back-to-back seasons with 19 wins in 2006 and 2007, becoming the first Yankee to win as many games in each of two consecutive seasons since Tommy John in 1979-80.
On April 22, 2008, in his 85th career start, Wang became the third-fastest Major League pitcher in the last 50 years to reach 50 career wins behind Dwight Gooden (82nd start) and the Yankees’ Ron Guidry (82nd start), according to the Elias Sports Bureau.
Signed by the Yankees as a non-drafted free agent on May 5, 2000, Wang has won more games than any Taiwanese-born pitcher and ranks third all-time in wins by Asian-born pitchers behind Japan’s Hideo Nomo (123) and South Korea’s Chan Ho Park (117).