The 2024 KBO League FA market has concluded. Although the market has been quiet compared to the atmosphere in recent years, the Samsung Lions and the Hanwha Eagles have actively strengthened their power.
FA Sovereignty and Kim Min-sung finalized their FA contracts on the 26th, respectively. Soju signed a contract with his original team KT for a total of up to 1.6 billion won for 2+2 years, and Kim Min-sung signed a contract with his original team LG for a total of 900 million won for 2+1 years and was immediately traded to Lotte Giants.
After Sovereignty and Kim Min-sung, all 19 FA destinations were decided. Last year, in February, when the spring camp began, there were four “uncontractors” including Lee Myung-ki, Kwon Hee-dong, Jung Chan-heon and Kang Ri-ho, which ended relatively smoothly.
The total contract of 19 FA members was 60.55 billion won, down nearly 20 billion won from last year’s 80.315 billion won.
Considering that Oh Ji-hwan, the highest-paid contractor (LG, 12.4 billion won for six years), had already signed a multi-year non-FA contract before the season, and then re-signed as an FA again after breaking it, it can be seen that it is practically more than half of last year. Except for Oh, there was no jackpot worth 10 billion won (approx.
The size of the FA market seems to have naturally decreased as players, who were considered the biggest fish, signed long-term contracts with their original teams early on. The trend is expected to continue for a while, with Ko Young-pyo (KT), who is set to sign a multi-year non-FA contract next year.
Only five players were transferred. Ahn Chi-hong (Lotte → Hanwha), followed by Kim Jae-yoon (KT → Samsung), Lim Chang-min (Kium → Samsung), Lee Ji-young (Kium → SSG), and Kim Min-sung (LG → Lotte). This is in stark contrast to Ahn Chi-hong (Lotte → Hanwha), who moved to another team last year, with 12 players, or nearly half of the 21 FA players, relocating their teams.월카지노주소
Samsung and Hanwha made noticeable moves. Samsung was the only team that had two players from outside the FA market, while Hanwha was the team that had the biggest amount of money (Ahn Chi-hong, who spent 7.2 billion won for 4+2 years) on outside FA.
Samsung focused on reinforcing the back door. Samsung, which suffered the most come-from-behind losses last season and the last place in the bullpen ERA, secured Kim Jae-yoon (four years, 5.8 billion won) and Lim Chang-min (two years, 800 million won) through external recruitment. Last season, Kim Jae-yoon played closing pitcher for KT and Lim Chang-min for Kiwoom, respectively.
On top of that, Oh Seung-hwan, an FA and franchise star in his team, also remained at 2.2 billion won (2.2 million U.S. dollars) for two years after suffering. In other words, the three closing pitchers of last season gathered at one place.
It is difficult for Kim Jae-yoon, Lim Chang-min, and Oh Seung-hwan, who are in their 40s, to expect “perfection.” However, if they can make up for their mutual shortcomings and create synergy, Samsung’s FA market strategy can be seen as a success.
Samsung also renewed contracts with pitcher Kim Dae-woo (two years, 400 million won) and infielder Kang Han-ul (two years, 300 million won). Except for pitcher Moon Yong-ik, who was compensated by Kim Jae-yoon, there was little loss of power.
Hanwha opened its wallet for the second consecutive year. It successfully managed to catch An Chi-hong, one of the biggest fish in the world, although the recruitment of as many as four players (Chae Eun-sung, Lee Tae-yang, Oh Seon-jin and Lee Myung-ki) last year is rather minor.
Ahn Chi-hong is 34 years old and will join the veteran ranks this year, but he is still a batter who can expect productive power in offense. With Ahn’s recruitment, the Hanwha Eagles will be able to add strength to its central lineup along with Chae Eun-sung, Noh Si-hwan, and new foreign player Jonathan Peraza.
Other teams focused more on protecting their home rabbits than recruiting them from outside. Doosan Bears kept its big guns Yang Seok-hwan (7.8 billion won for 4+2 years) and Hong Geon-hee (2.45 billion won for 2+2 years), while KIA also kept its hands on Kim Sun-bin (three billion won for three years) and Ko Jong-wook (two years).
LG, which won last year’s integrated championship, also defended both Lim Chan-kyu (four years, 5 billion won) and Ham Deok-ju (four years, 3.8 billion won) to prevent power leakage. However, closing pitcher Ko Woo-seok has advanced to the Major League, and the loss of utility infielder Kim Min-sung to Lotte is a negative factor.
Lotte gave up An Chi-hong, but they put Jeon Joon-woo down and recruited veteran Kim Min-sung to minimize the leakage.
Kiwoom, which took aggressive steps last year, reaffirmed its “rebuilding” stance. It gave up both Lim Chang-min and Lee Ji-young, and there was no significant recruitment. As the pillars of pitching and hitting such as Lee Jung-hoo (to advance to ML) and Ahn Woo-jin (to join the military) have already been removed, the team is committed to giving many opportunities to young players.