On Thursday evening, both the agency that represents Korean outfielder Hyun Soo Kim and Orioles executive vice president Dan Duquette offered statements about the situation involving Kim’s employment with the Orioles.
After struggling during spring training – Kim started the spring 0-for-23 and has eight singles and no extra base hits in 44 at-bats – the Orioles informed the 28-year-old that he was not going to make the 25-man roster and they wanted him to go to Triple-A.
However, the two-year, $7 million contract that Kim signed this winter has a provision in it that prohibits the team from sending him to the minors.
He doesn’t want to go to Triple-A; the Orioles don’t think he is ready for the big leagues. That’s the rub.
Stay tuned in this international soap opera. For now, here are the statements:
From Leeco Sports Agency and translated into English by Jeeho Yoo of Yonhap News:
“Kim would like to see his contract honored and executed faithfully. He also hopes to receive fair opportunities to continue his career as a major leaguer with Baltimore.”
From Duquette in a series of text messages:
“It was a razor thin roster call choosing another player, given Kim’s distinguished track record. It is a short transition period to adjust to coming to Baltimore and I wish we had more time. In Korea, the pro clubs train for 10 weeks to prepare for (the) season, but here just half that time. The Orioles are happy Kim is on board, but feel (the) player needs more at-bats to prepare for (the) season, which unfortunately we don’t have right now in Baltimore and it is (the) reason (the) club requested (the) player consider (an) optional assignment. We recognize player rights and we are glad to have him in (the) organization. We all look forward to his contributions to the club after Kim has more time to adjust to his new surroundings.”