The moves of three foreign pitchers in the KBO League surrounding the major leagues were mixed.
After the season last year, NC Drew Luchinski (35), Kiwoom Eric Yokishi (34), and SSG Wilmer Font (33) received major league attention side by side. Foreign pitchers from the KBO League, such as Merrill Kelly (Arizona), Brooks Reilly (New York Mets), and Chris Flexen (Seattle), were successful and scouts were interested.
Luchinski and Yokishi have been active as longevity foreigners for four years since 2019, and Font has also been a proven pitcher in Korea for two years since 2021. However, the decisions and actions of the three pitchers were different.
The player who worked out the best was Luchinski. On the 22nd of last month, he signed a 1+1 year contract with the Oakland Athletics and succeeded in returning to the major leagues after 5 years since 2018. With an annual salary of 3 million dollars guaranteed this year, up to 8 million dollars with the addition of a club option for an annual salary of 5 million dollars next year. Last year, NC received the highest treatment among foreign players with a total of 2 million dollars, but the treatment in the major leagues is incomparably better.
On the other hand, Font, who said goodbye to SSG early, could not win a major league guarantee contract. On the 6th, I signed a minor league contract with the San Diego Padres. The font, which received a total of 1.5 million dollars from SSG last year, would have been better treated with a winning premium if it had remained in Korea. However, he signed a minor contract without a guaranteed amount and re-challenged in the big leagues as an invited player for spring training.
Yokishi remained in Korea at all. On the 12th of last month, he renewed his contract with Kiwoom for a total of $1.5 million. Kiwoom and his accompany will continue for five years under the condition of a $200,000 increase from last year’s $1.3 million. There were predictions that the Seattle Mariners, Los Angeles Angels, Miami Marlins, and Houston Astros would show interest and leave Korea, but it seems that they were considering the practicality.
No one knows what the outcome of each different choice will be. 토토사이트
Luchinski has a one-year guaranteed contract, so he has to compete this year. Auckland, which is made up of young starters, expects him to be an experienced veteran. We need the inning digestibility he showed in the KBO league. If he succeeds, it is good, but if he fails, his future future may be uncertain due to his considerable age of 35 years. There is Josh Lindblom, who returned to the big leagues after winning the KBO league MVP, but after failing for three years, he has nowhere to go.
Font isn’t the major league contract he was hoping for, but he competes as a starter in San Diego, where the fourth and fifth starters are unstable. It’s not easy, but there are success stories. A good example is Rayleigh, who survived the competition after leaving Lotte at the end of 2019 and overcoming the waiting situation with a minor contract and a transfer nomination (DFA). In the case of left-hander Rayleigh, he made use of his special strength as a left-handed hitter specialist. Without such competitiveness, the font has no choice but to return to the KBO league like Dan Straley (Lotte). Strayley also tried with a minor contract last year, but returned to Lotte after failing.
Yokishi, who remained in the KBO League, took a much more stable path than Luchinski or Font. There is no need for competition or adaptation. He doesn’t have a fast ball, but he has a long run in the KBO league, throwing a variety of pitches with excellent command, two-seam, and curve. He’s not the type to break down easily. Along with Casey Kelly (LG), he continues his career as the longest-serving foreigner in the KBO for 5 years.