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Pirates out of running for hot free agent Shohei Ohtani

Rob Biertempfel
| Sunday, Dec. 3, 2017, 8:07 p.m.
FILE - In this Nov. 19, 2015, file photo, Japan's starter Shohei Otani pitches against South Korea during the first inning of their semifinal game at the Premier12 world baseball tournament at Tokyo Dome in Tokyo. A person familiar with the decision says Major League Baseball owners on Friday, Dec. 1, 2017, have approved a new posting agreement with their Japanese counterparts in a move that allows bidding to start for coveted pitcher and outfielder Shohei Ohtani.   The person spoke on condition of anonymity because no announcement had been made. (AP Photo/Shizuo Kambayashi, File)
FILE - In this Nov. 19, 2015, file photo, Japan's starter Shohei Otani pitches against South Korea during the first inning of their semifinal game at the Premier12 world baseball tournament at Tokyo Dome in Tokyo. A person familiar with the decision says Major League Baseball owners on Friday, Dec. 1, 2017, have approved a new posting agreement with their Japanese counterparts in a move that allows bidding to start for coveted pitcher and outfielder Shohei Ohtani. The person spoke on condition of anonymity because no announcement had been made. (AP Photo/Shizuo Kambayashi, File)

The Pirates are no longer in the mix for coveted international free agent Shohei Ohtani, according to a Pirates source.

On Sunday night, Ohtani's camp informed teams whether they were on his short list of candidates.

For once, money was not the reason the Pirates fell out of the hunt as they have enough international pool money to do a deal. Ohtani asked every MLB club to make a written sales pitch — presenting data about their farm systems, coaching philosophies, metropolitan areas and such — and he narrowed his choices from there.

The New York Yankees, whom some pundits considered an early frontrunner, did not make the cut.

The Chicago Cubs and several West Coast clubs, including the Seattle Mariners, San Francisco Giants and San Diego Padres, reportedly remain in contention to sign Ohtani.

Ohtani, 23, wants to be a two-way player in MLB.

— Rob Biertempfel

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