He invested the same amount, but fell into a slump. The team’s decision was to change batters, not pitchers.
Lotte Giants, which is struggling due to sluggish foreign players, made a decision. Last month, Jack Rex, who had been rehabilitating due to a knee injury, was announced by Waver, and Nico Goodrum, who recorded 42 home runs in the big league,꽁머니 was recruited for a total of $400,000 (annual salary of $400,000). Goodrum is expected to enter the country on the 15th to spend his adjustment period during the All-Star break and be registered in the first division on the 21st, the opening day of the second half.
Some predict that Lotte will make some kind of decision when it cancels foreign pitcher Dan Straily in the first division on the 10th. Straily, who joined Lotte as a substitute in the second half of last year, started with a total of $1 million this year under a guarantee contract. However, he had only three wins (5 losses) and a 4.37 ERA in 16 games in the first half. Quality starts (more than six innings, less than three earned runs) were only four games, and since he became the winning pitcher against KIA on June 2 (two runs in seven innings), he has lost only one game in all six games with less than six innings. It is strange that he will not be kicked out because all of his ball power and control fell short of expectations. However, Lotte chose to send Rex, who renewed his contract for a total of $1.3 million, first, not Straily.
Foreign supply and demand, especially the pitcher market, are not very good this year. Through the Corona era, demand in the big leagues naturally increased as the pool of minor league players decreased, which led to a turnaround toward the Asian stage. It is being shunned by foreign pitchers in that it is difficult to hit the so-called “big hit” as a substitute player, not the starting line of the season that can receive up to $1 million. While most of the teams that pushed for the replacement found the answer, it was also expected that it would be difficult to reach an optimal conclusion even if Lotte moved at this point.
The team’s situation was also forced to lean toward reinforcing batters rather than pitchers. None of the Lotte players who filled the regulation’s at-bats until the 11th has a batting average of .300 and an OPS (on-base percentage + slugging percentage) of 0.800 or higher. Jeon Joon-woo, who hit six home runs, is also in the lead. The total number of home runs in the team is only 33, and the number of doubles is also last along with the KIA Tigers (102). Lotte believes that it will be difficult to add strength to the lineup even if Rex, who had a batting average of less than 20% before injury, returns from rehabilitation at a time when Lotte, which once exceeded the lead with a win-loss margin of +11, fell and became uncertain in the second half. Lotte manager Larry Sutton said of Goodrum, “He has above average long-distance and contact skills. It will show productivity,” he said, expressing expectations
Of course, it is unclear whether Lotte will continue to accompany Straily. Last year, Lotte completed a contract for a substitute foreign player in August, early in the second half. Depending on the situation, we cannot rule out the possibility that similar moves will continue this year.