The Oakland Athletics and Seattle Mariners will open the 2012 Major League Baseball season on March 28-29 in Tokyo, the first season-opener in Japan since 2008.
Manny Ramirez agreed to a minor- league contract with the Oakland Athletics and would have to serve a 50-game drug suspension before he plays this season.
The Oakland Athletics won the negotiating rights for Japanese pitcher Hisashi Iwakuma, a member of the All-Tournament Team at the 2009 World Baseball Classic.
The Oakland Athletics signed free- agent designated hitter Hideki Matsui to a one-year contract, the Major League Baseball team said on its website.
The New York Mets hired former Oakland Athletics manager Bob Geren as bench coach as the team rebuilds its staff following a third consecutive losing season.