The Pirates secured exclusive negotiating rights for infielder Jung-ho Kang with a $5,002,015 posting fee late last month and Jon Heyman of CBS Sports’ hears that the two sides are close to a four-year deal.
Kang’s agent, Alan Nero, told Travis Sawchik of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review that he anticipates getting a deal done “mid next week.” No word on the potential terms being discussed, but reports out of Korea say he’s looking for a four-year, $20 million contract. The two sides have until January 20 to work out a deal. If they are unable to reach an agreement, Pittsburgh will get their posting fee back and Kang will return to his team in the KBO (Korea Baseball Organization).
Kang batted .354/.457/.733 with 39 home runs and 115 RBI in 116 games last season Nexen Heroes, but there are questions about how his bat will translate in MLB and he might not be able to stay at shortstop. There’s no clear fit for the 27-year-old in the Pirates’ starting lineup right now, as they already have Neil Walker at second base, Jordy Mercer at shortstop, and Josh Harrison at third.
Red Sox left-hander Chris Sale has been placed on the 10-day injured list with left elbow inflammation, the club revealed Saturday. The assignment is retroactive to August 14. In a corresponding roster move, right-handed reliever Ryan Brasier was recalled from Triple-A Pawtucket.
It’s an alarming development for the 30-year-old ace, who has been remarkably injury-free after dealing with a lingering case of shoulder inflammation last summer. While he hasn’t replicated the career-high results he delivered over the last two seasons, he still leads Red Sox pitchers with 3.6 fWAR and will head to the IL with a 6-11 record in 25 starts, a 4.40 ERA, 2.3 BB/9, and league-best 13.3 SO/9 through 147 1/3 innings. A timetable has not been given for his return, nor has the severity of his injury been disclosed. Per Red Sox president Dave Dombrowski, Sale has been experiencing pain in his elbow since Wednesday and will undergo further evaluation in the days to come.
Brasier, 31, was optioned to Triple-A Pawtucket in mid-July after pitching to mixed results in the majors. He currently holds a 4.46 ERA, 2.7 BB/9, and 8.0 SO/9 with the Red Sox, though his results in Triple-A — one run, one walk, and 13 strikeouts over 9 1/3 innings — suggest that he might be capable of even sharper results when he rejoins the big league club.