18 January 2013

Update on Kim Seong-min, Orioles attempted signee

If you are a fan of this site, then you probably know quite a bit about Kim Seong-min and the incident that the Orioles caused last season.  Briefly put, Kim Seong-min was the big splash in the international scene that many fans craved and people outside the organization were calling for. 

However, it was a signing that confused many people like Keith Law who was told by his sources that the prospect in question did not match the Orioles description that they were feeding the local media.  Next, it was determined that in the Orioles haste at signing him, they violated agreements that were in place with Major League Baseball which resulted in the Orioles being banned from amateur events in the country, Kim Seong-min being banned from all amateur play, and the 500k deal to be nullified with negotiations suspended for several weeks.  Additional looks seemed to prove the field correct and after the Orioles could restart negotiations, they brought him in and found him not to be the pitcher that was described to them from their scout.  This left Kim Seong-min out to dry.

Recently, I used Google translate to read this article.  However, much can be lost in translation, so I asked a friend of the Depot, Yoo Jee-ho, to provide a proper summary.
Kim is accepting a full baseball scholarship at Fukuoka University of Economics in Japan.  The reporter met Kim on January 6, four days before he was to leave to join the school's training camp.
Kim is still under the indefinite suspension by the Korea Baseball Association (KBA) for his contract situation with the Orioles. At first, he wanted to get his mandatory military service out of the way and join the South Korean military team, called Sangmu, (which, by the way, plays in the Futures League, a Korean equivalent of the minor league), but he was rejected because of that suspension.
Kim also said he thought about quitting baseball entirely but his father encouraged him to stay patient and wait for an opportunity to come. Now, Kim said he's extra motivated to prove to people what a great player he is. He also said he'd like to return to Korea and play ball here in the future. His dream is to represent Korea internationally.
To my knowledge, the Orioles' scouts are still banned from viewing KBA sanctioned events (they are permitted to scout KBO events or non-sanctioned events, including training).  Also to my knowledge, the Orioles have yet to sign any free agents from Korea this past off season, but I cannot verify that.


Unknown said...

Wow, are we sure this isn't North Korea?

They are doing the young man a great disservice.

Jon Shepherd said...

So you are saying that these tactics, which are similar to NCAA's tactics with amateur baseball players, makes the USA like North Korea as well?