Japanese Veteran Tateyama Joining Texas Rangers

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    TK
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    A detailed picture of a Texas Rangers hat and glove in the dugout before Game Two of the 2010 MLB World Series against the San Francisco Giants at AT&T Park on October 28, 2010 in San Francisco, California. (Photo by Jed Jacobsohn/Getty Images)

    Japanese free-agent pitcher Yoshinori Tateyama has agreed to a one-year contract with the AL champion Texas Rangers that includes club options for each of the two seasons after that.

    Tateyama, a sidearm thrower who turns 35 on Dec. 26, is looking to pitch in the United States for the first time.

    Texas announced the signing Tuesday.

    Tateyama has spent his entire career (1999-10) with the Nippon Ham Fighters in Japan's Pacific League. Primarily a reliever, he has a 3.43 ERA in 438 appearances.

    In 58 games last season, Tateyama had a career-low 1.80 ERA. He was 1-2 with four saves and held opposing hitters to a .213 average. He struck out 59 and walked 11.