Umpire State: NY Yankee Tanaka Will Lose over Half of $155M Contract in Taxes

Umpire State: NY Yankee Tanaka Will Lose over Half of $155M Contract in Taxes

Masahiro Tanaka, the heralded Japanese pitcher that the New York Yankees signed to a 7-year contract worth $155 million, will pay almost $90 million of that in taxes for the privilege of playing in New York. 

Tanaka signed with the Yankees over a month after the Seattle Mariners were able to offer former Yankees second baseman Robinson Cano $42 million more after-tax dollars because the state of Washington has no state income tax. 

According to the analysis:

Tanaka will pay a combined marginal income tax rate of 56.1 percent – over half of his contract. For New York state and local taxes alone he will lose an estimated $2,811,257 a year. The combined marginal income tax rate Tanaka will pay is comprised of the federal, state and local tax rates, plus the Medicare payroll tax.

As Americans for Tax Reform notes, “Tanaka was also being courted by the Arizona Diamondbacks and the Chicago Cubs,” and “unlike New York City, the cities of Phoenix and Chicago do not impose a city income tax.” 

By choosing New York, “Tanaka automatically forfeited almost $20 million in taxes that would have been saved had he signed with the Cubs or Diamondbacks.”

As a result, he will only pocket $68 million–and pay $87 million in taxes–of the $155 million because of heavy federal and state tax burdens. 

In addition to citing New York Governor Andrew Cuomo’s (D) declaration that conservatives are not wanted in the state, Fox News host Sean Hannity also said New York’s confiscatory taxes also caused him to decide to leave New York once his son graduates from high school. 


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