Will the brother-in-law’s dream of becoming a hawk with a jackpot of 148.4 billion won come true? Attention is focusing on “I can help the GO and ML team at the end of Korea.”

CBS Sports recently published an article analyzing the situation of the international free agent (FA) market, which seeks to advance to the Major League. By far, the biggest player was Yoshinobu Yamamoto, 25, who is being recruited by major teams such as the Los Angeles Dodgers and the New York Yankees. CBS Sports said, “Yamamoto is the most ideal player that can be recruited in this offseason. A former Orix Buffaloes ace, he has not played in a major league game yet, but he is only 25 years old and has talent enough to play in a big league rotation. He is currently in contact with multiple big market teams, and is expected to sign a contract worth at least 300 million dollars.” 파친코

Yamamoto is one of the top right-handed pitchers with 70 wins and 29 losses and an earned run average of 1.82 in 172 games in the Japanese professional baseball league. He became the first Japanese professional baseball player to win five titles in two consecutive years in 2021 and 2022, and won the Sawamura Award, a Japanese Cy Young Award, for the third consecutive year. In this season, he had overwhelming results with 16 wins and 6 losses and an earned run average of 1.21 in 23 games at NPB Orix, declaring his entry into the big league through the posting system.

Ko has been named as a member of Group B that succeeds Yamamoto. Although it was not mentioned first, it was evaluated that he can play along with top-notch pitchers in the Japanese professional baseball league, which is one better than the KBO league. First of all, it is encouraging that he is constantly attracting attention from multiple U.S. media outlets.

“Yamamoto is not the only well-known player in the international free agent market. Japanese left-hander Shota Imanaga, Cuban right-hander Yariel Rodriguez, and Japanese left-hander Yuki Matsui are all challenging the Major League Baseball, while Korean closer Ko Woo-suk is also there. They are not highly regarded, but they have skills that can help Major League teams,” CBS Sports said. Ko, who was the first pick of the 2017 LG Twins in the rookie draft, completed seven seasons in which he could advance overseas through the posting system after the 2023 season, and conveyed his long-cherished dream of challenging the Major League to LG.

After confirming Ko’s intention to play overseas, LG accepted Ko’s bid to play in the Major League on November 21. “I asked Ko to give it a try. We need to see how much interest the Major League side has,” LG manager Cha Myung-seok said. “In the past, Kim Jae-hwan (Doosan) also tried, but gave up because the conditions he wanted were not met. As it could happen again this time, I asked him to give it a try and talk to the team when the player was satisfied with the amount.”

Ko has been a built-in closer for LG since 2019. He recorded 19 wins, 26 losses and 139 saves with a six-hold ERA of 3.18 in 354 games during his seven seasons, and became the league’s best closing pitcher last year when he became the first save king with a 1.48 ERA and 42 saves.

This year, he suffered neck and shoulder injuries at the World Baseball Classic (WBC) in March, and only had three wins and eight losses and 15 saves with a 3.68 ERA in 44 games. Although he was sluggish with one win, one loss, one save, and an ERA of 8.31 in four games in the Korean Series, he helped the team win the championship for the first time in 29 years since 1994, winning his first championship ring in his career.

Currently, the team that is constantly connected to Ko Woo-suk is the St. Louis Cardinals from the National League Central where Oh Seung-hwan and Kim Kwang-hyun played in the past. St. Louis, which needs to strengthen its bullpen, reportedly met with Ko Woo-suk and Yuki Matsui’s agent last week to discuss recruiting. Local media reported that St. Louis is likely to add two bullpen pitchers.

Meanwhile, Ko Woo-suk’s brother-in-law, Lee Jung-hoo, signed a six-year, $113 million (about 148.4 billion won) mega contract with the San Francisco Giants on the 13th, achieving his dream to advance to the Major League. Attention is focusing on whether the husband-in-law will be able to follow his brother-in-law and end his family’s great challenge. Ko Woo-seok, who has been freely negotiating with 30 Major League clubs since 8 a.m. on the 5th (U.S. Eastern Time), is 5 p.m. on January 3, 2024 (U.S. Eastern Time).

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