Pirates Had Scouts Watching Korean First Baseman Byung-ho Park

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).

  • Pretty impressive player – would look great at 1st base in a pirate uniform.


    • I have a feeling that the big spenders will go to a high number posting fee (20M+) on this guy after seeing the what the Bucs did with Kang.

  • Would love to see how he would do with the Bucs – Kang is such a bargain the Bucs could easily afford to go higher for Park. And a power hitting first baseman with 4 or so years of control would be awesome.

    I remain a Bell skeptic until he proves me wrong – I lived in Chicago when they had Mark Grace hitting 10 HRs a year – corner guys need to deliver runs.

    • Grace has a 12-year run where he averaged 3.6 WAR per year. I’d settle for that – and so would the majority of teams. OPS of .837. RBI’s only 80 per year – but he clearly was an above-average 1B. Not a star but certainly better than Alvarez with his 25-30 HR’s per year.

  • Does Park play any other position besides 1st base? Seems like the Pirates investment in Bell may serve as a limitation on how much they would be willing to invest in two players at this position.

  • Japan has a $20m cap on posting fees; Korea remains unrestricted.

  • I think they should start scouting North Korea. I heard Lil Kim is toolsy backstop with a no nonsense demeanor. His father once shot a 39 playing golf.

  • Posting fee should be about the same in my opinion as Park is much less athletic and doesn’t bring the same type of flexibility Kang does.

  • peanutbutterguts
    August 27, 2015 10:51 pm

    Posting fee is the amount of money the mlb team signing the player will owe the players previous team just for the right to sign him; the team with the highest bid has the rights to negotiate. Refundable if he doesn’t sign.

  • Tim, is there any projection on what the winning posting fee may end up being for him? I know it’s early and a lot can and will happen, but what is your prediction? Surely it won’t reach the 20 million mark will it?

    My guess would be around 10-12M just by looking at the bargain Kang has been but with the question marks that seem to come with Park.

    Any input for this would be great!

  • A player similar to Kang (good baseball head, always thinking, and taking whatever he can get…just plain smart!) who can produce hits, runs and plays instinctive D, which not lal of the current Bucs do!!).

  • A deal similar to Kang’s for Park would be a nice addition.

    • Gotta think he’ll get a bump because of Kang. Lotta power, 1B, Kang helping with the notion that it’ll translate. Seems like the posting fee might be double.