Jung-ho Kang has been a huge success for the Pirates this year, and a huge value after signing a four-year, $11 M contract and getting a $5 M posting fee. So it’s no surprise that the Pirates would be looking at the next guy expected to come out of Korea — first baseman Byung-ho Park. Dan at MyKBO has the news.
Dan also elaborated who was actually watching these players.
Brooks is the Director of Player Personnel, and DelPiano is a Special Assistant to the General Manager. No confirmation that those two were the ones actually there, but if they were, you’ve got two high level guys watching this game, and not just a regular look from an international scout.
The Pirates could have been there watching anyone, although it makes the most sense that they’d be looking at Park. This is shaping up to be an interesting off-season for the Korean market, as we see how the rest of the league reacts to the success from Kang. The maximum posting fee is $20 M, and if that happens, any team posting that amount would have the right to negotiate with Park. You’d think the Pirates would have the advantage in that case since they already have Kang. But there’s also no guarantee that Park gets that posting fee, since he’s a much different player than Kang, and might not have the same value due to his batting profile (potentially more risk of strikeout issues) and his position (less value at 1B than SS).