“As soon as the market opens” the burning stove league…Life-long Lotte big-name transfer, FA-class 2nd draft transfer rumor
The stovepipes are open for the 2024 season. Free agency saw two meaningful signings on day one, and then the return of the Secondary Draft a day later. With early rumors of free agents coming off the disabled list, attention is focused on which teams will make which selections.
The KBO announced the list of 19 approved free agents on the afternoon of the 18th. The announcement of the roster alone created a buzz. This year’s free agency was expected to be a difficult market to pick a ‘big fish’, and the general consensus was that there was no player on the roster who could get a big contract worth 10 billion won. However, LG’s Oh Ji-hwan was approved for free agency, causing controversy.굿모닝토토
Oh signed a six-year, 12.4 billion won extension with LG ahead of this season. However, there was a “hint” at the beginning of the contract. When LG announced the extension, they also announced that the new contract would start in 2024. It is LG’s intention to make this new contract a free agent deal.
The strategy of announcing an extension and then treating him as a free agent could be seen as a “trick” depending on how you look at it, as it’s a way to increase their automatic protection ahead of the second round of the draft. In any case, LG will actually be able to keep one more player than other teams.
However, Oh Ji-hwan was not the only one to sign a contract in the first round of free agency. On Monday, the 20th, Lotte signed franchise star Jeon Jun-woo to a four-year, guaranteed contract worth 4 billion won and up to 4.7 billion won in incentives. The 37-year-old has declared himself a Lotte player for life.
Through the club, Jeon Jun-woo said, “I would like to express my gratitude to the fans who have shown me a lot of interest and hot support since joining Lotte, and to owner Shin Dong-bin for recognizing my performance and future value over the past four years in my second free agency. As I signed for a satisfactory amount, I will meet the expectations of the fans with good performance as a Lotte franchise player.”
In the afternoon, the first transfer was announced. This time, it was Lotte’s Ahn Chi-hong, who agreed to a 4+2 year deal with Hanwha for up to 7.2 billion won, with 4.7 billion won guaranteed. Negotiations began on the 19th, and the deal was finalized in just one day.토토사이트
Upon announcing his move, Ahn Chi-hong said, “I’m grateful to the Hanwha Eagles for valuing me so highly and offering me such a good deal. As a team with many young players, I will be a player who can set an example in all aspects and contribute to the team’s leap forward.” “I would like to thank the Lotte Giants organization and fans for their support and love until the end,” said Lotte.
Son Hyuk, who led the move, said, “Ahn Chi-hong is a player who possesses both ‘steadiness and sincerity’, which are essential for our team. There was no reason for the club to hesitate to sign him. Fortunately, the player recognized our feelings and we were able to create good results.”
Park Jun-hyuk added, “Ahn Chi-hong made a huge contribution during his time with the team, and we feel the void is not small for a player of his caliber. In order to fill the void of Ahn Chi-hong, we have to think about various aspects such as secondary draft, trade, and player development, and we have been thinking about it until now. I am also thinking about it with the coach.”
At this point, Park Jun-hyuk was not quick to mention how he plans to fill the void left by Ahn Chi-hong. Even though he had a number of options in mind, he was careful not to say too much. He seemed concerned about the repercussions of talking too much and not doing enough. “Powering up doesn’t happen with dramatic things. It’s our job to do ordinary things well one by one,” he said.
The 22nd marks the return of the Secondary Draft, which was eliminated in 2020 and briefly replaced by Futures Free Agency. The Secondary Draft is an opportunity for teams to make moves outside of the 35-man roster, with automatic protection for players in their first through third years of eligibility, current year free agents, and players who were traded for free agent compensation prior to the draft.
On the 14th, the list of protected players was sent to the teams, and since then, rumors have been circulating that this year’s secondary draft is different from previous years in that some of the most recognizable names have been removed from the protected list. With the introduction of the salary cap, it is possible that players who are not performing as well as they should be have been categorized as non-performers. Rumors are already circulating about which players the teams with the top picks will take.
After signing a two-year contract for a total of 900 million won, including 300 million won in signing bonus and 300 million won in annual salary, Lee said, “I am honored to be appointed as the head coach of SSG Landers and sincerely thank the club for the opportunity. I will take responsibility for the huge task of performance and development, and together with the surrounding coaching staff, players, and front office, I will lay the foundation for a strong team that can perform well every year.” “I am excited to be back in Incheon, and I will fulfill my duties with the goal of restructuring the team and growing prospects so that we can meet the expectations of our fans,” he said.
If the 20th, the first weekday after StubHub’s opening, is considered the “opening,” then in just three days, there was a flurry of signings and transfers that could make or break the next season, and that the baseball world and fans will be watching closely. The KBO, which began with box office concerns and has grown to 8 million fans, is poised to take over the winter sports spotlight.