Ryu Hyun-jin (Yonhap News)
At least two Major League Baseball clubs have submitted bids for the service of South Korean pitcher Ryu Hyun-jin, sources said Friday, as the South Korean league awaits confirmation from the MLB.
The Los Angeles Dodgers are interested in the 25-year-old pitcher, an informed source in the U.S. told Yonhap News Agency Friday.
Earlier, Chicago Tribune newspaper reported that the Chicago Cubs were among teams that handed in bids for Ryu. The deadline for teams to submit bids in the posting process was 5 p.m. Eastern Standard Time on Thursday.
Los Angeles has one of the largest Korean communities in the U.S., and the Dodgers have employed South Korean players before, including pitchers Park Chan-ho and Seo Jae-weong, and first baseman Choi Hee-seop.
Choi has also played for the Cubs. Several South Korean high school players have joined the Cubs’ minor league teams in recent years.
The Hanwha Eagles of the KBO posted Ryu earlier this month and the four-day bidding period commenced after the KBO notified MLB of the pitcher’s availability.
The Eagles now have four business days to decide if they are going to accept the highest of the sealed bids.
KBO officials here in Busan, where the league is running the Asia Series tournament, said they have not yet heard from MLB commissioners’ office regarding the bids. The KBO will at first learn only the bid amount, not the team that made it.
Other reports have claimed the Texas Rangers, the Cleveland Indians and the Boston Red Sox are also interested in Ryu.
If the Eagles decide to accept the highest bid, which is non-negotiable, the MLB club will have the exclusive right to negotiate with Ryu for 30 days. If the two sides reach an agreement, the Eagles will take the bid money as a transfer fee for the pitcher. (Yonhap News)