Byung Ho Park was a two-time MVP and four-time home run champion in Korea and went deep Sunday for the first time since signing with the Twins, smacking a grand slam to left-center field off Rays right-hander Jake Odorizzi.
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Minnesota paid $12.85 million for Park’s exclusive negotiating rights and then signed him to a four-year, $12 million deal. He’s slated to be the Twins’ starting designated hitter and, eventually, a middle-of-the-lineup power source.
Because of a high strikeout rate Park may struggle to maintain a strong batting average for the Twins, but everyone seems to agree that his power potential is for real. Last season in Korea he hit .343 with 53 homers and a 1.150 OPS in 140 games for his second straight 50-homer season and third straight year with an OPS above 1.000.