TAMPA, Fla. (AP) — Masahiro Tanaka went with his heart when deciding not to opt out of the final three seasons of his $155 million, seven-year contract signed in January 2014 with the New York Yankees.

"We went into battle with these guys, last year especially," Tanaka said Wednesday through a translator after a bullpen session at the Yankees' minor league complex.

"My thought was I want to go out and battle with these guys again and try to really get to where we want to get."

New York came within one game of reaching the World Series last season, losing in Game 7 of the ALCS to Houston.

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