Samsung, which was in the lower ranks after leaving the dynasty behind, stayed in 8th place in 2019. With a win rate of 0.420, it was far from fifth place. However, starting in 2020, grades began to improve little by little. The final ranking in 2020 was 8th, but the odds rose considerably to 0.460.
And in 2021, the team’s performance has risen so much that it aims to win until the last day of the regular season. There are many factors such as free agent (FA) investment and improvement of young players’ skills, but the fact that they succeeded in selecting foreign players could not be ignored. The formula of the KBO League, “If you select all three foreign players well, you can do the basics,” is vaguely revealed here as well.
Samsung selected right-hander David Buchanan (34) in 2020 and outfielder Jose Pirella (34) in 2021 and enjoyed a great power reinforcement effect. The two players had different nationalities and positions, but they had one thing in common. It is the experience of Japanese professional baseball. Although he did not achieve great success in Japan, he still left a competitive grade and showed that his skills worked well in Korea.
Buchanan played 83 games over three years and recorded an ace-class record of 42-20 with an ERA of 3.20. Pirella also faithfully participated in 281 games for two years, leading the team’s batting line with a batting average of 0.314, 57 homers, and 206 RBIs. Samsung, who hit the jackpot as a former Japanese professional baseball player, recruited Albert Suarez last year and made another profitable business. Despite severe bad luck, Suarez scored a goal to renew the contract in 2023 alongside the two leading players with a record of 6-8 and an average ERA of 2.49 in 30 games.
Being kicked out of Japan has an element of anxiety, but the baseball world’s view is that there are not a few advantages if you choose well. First of all, the fact that he received a love call from a Japanese club symbolizes that he has some level of skill. Here, he comes to Korea in a state of adaptation to Asian baseball. Korean, Japanese and foreign players put a lot of importance on not only skills, but also affinity, adaptability, and responsibility토토사이트. Knowing how their evaluations change in this culture, it is not uncommon for players to change their style accordingly.
The success of Samsung’s ‘Triple Combo’ has attracted the attention of other clubs, and the trend is also changing. Among the new foreign players who joined this year, there are a few players who have experienced the Japanese stage. Hanwha, which has not been able to get out of the bottom in recent years, may also expect such an effect. Right-hander Birch Smith (33) and outfielder Brian O’Grady (31) are experienced Asian baseball players who played alongside each other in Seibu, the Japanese professional baseball last year.
Smith’s career in the major leagues is not small, with 102 games, and Seibu was also a player recruited with high expectations in its own way. He went back and forth between the starter and the bullpen, and at the beginning of the season, he showed flashing game content. Although injury is always a concern, if he is healthy, he is expected to be an ace-level player with a powerful fastball.
O’Gredi, who plays both infield and outfield, is another player that KBO League scouts have been keeping an eye on for years. He remembers that he performed well until the beginning of the season last year. Although his performance slumped toward the end, it is necessary to consider the flow of pitchers in Japanese professional baseball last year. Expectations are high for him as a player who can make multiple contributions to Hanwha, where overall field power is weak. He has strength and defense.
In order for Hanwha to escape from the bottom, foreign players are absolutely necessary. Although young players have grown and recruited Chae Eun-seong and Oh Seon-jin from the free agent (FA) market, it cannot be said that the domestic player base is strong yet. Theoretically, it is a team that can create a great atmosphere, so foreign players should take the lead and create an atmosphere for victory. If up to two players succeed, KBO clubs’ eyes on foreign players in Nippon Professional Baseball may broaden.