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Darvish Signs Exclusive Deal With Topps

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Yu Darvish of the Texas Rangers poses during Spring Training Photo Day on February 28, 2012 in Surprise, Arizona. (credit: Jamie Squire/Getty Images)

NEW YORK (AP) - Rangers pitcher Yu Darvish has reached a multiyear deal with Topps that grants the company exclusive rights for autographed trading and game-used memorabilia cards.

The deal announced Monday is the first in the United States for Darvish, Japan’s top pitcher before he got a six-year contract from the two-time defending American League champions.

Topps vice president of marketing Mark Sapir says Darvish “transcends baseball on a global scale.”

Topps will also use Darvish for social media and on packaging and promotion for the company’s products

Darvish says he’s excited to see his rookie card with him wearing a Rangers jersey.

The 25-year-old right-hander was a two-time Pacific League MVP in Japan. He had a 93-38 record with a 1.99 ERA in 167 games the past seven seasons.

(© Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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