The Red Sox’ deal with Daisuke Matsuzaka appears dead in the water now that Major League Baseball has decided that posting money given to Seibu cannot be returned to Boston to be used as salary for the Lion’s pitching sensation. It’s possible, however Boston could take this decision to the courts.

At first it looked like a brilliant decision by Boston – obtain exclusive negotiating rights by offering an unreasonable posting sum, then negotiate in earnest with Scott Boras to find out Matsuzaka’s true price as a player. Then go back to Seibu and say “hey, we’ve got ourselves a problem, Daisuke isn’t budging – we need you to cough up $15 million of the posting fee or we aren’t going to get a deal done…”

Seibu then has a hard choice; either fork out the money or get nothing. If Matsuzaka isn’t signed within thirty days then all bets are off and the Seibu Lions have to refund the money AND pay for the player’s 2007 salary.

It will be interesting to see what happens next; the Yankees overpaid yesterday to Hanshin for the rights to negotiate with Kei Igawa.

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