With the Lotte Giants’ “one-two punch” Charlie Barnes headed to the U.S., attention is turning to a foreign bat to replace Niko Goodrum. Lotte has been in contact with potential candidates and has up to four names on its list just in case.
“Along with re-signing Barnes, we are also negotiating for a new foreign bat,” a senior Lotte official told an international newspaper on Thursday. Both are likely to be finalized around the same time,” the official said, adding, “There are about five candidates for the new outfielder.”
Lotte removed existing foreign batsman Goodrum from the disabled list on March 30. The move ended Goodrum’s four-month stint with the organization after he donned a Lotte uniform in July. Born in the United States in 1992, Goodrum was highly sought after as a utility player who could play either the outfield or the infield with his outstanding physical attributes of 192 centimeters tall and 99 kilograms. However, when the lid was lifted, he was not a bad prospect, but he had poor power, defense, and stolen bases. After joining the team late in the first half, Goodrum’s final numbers for the season were .295 with 51 hits, 0 home runs, and 0 stolen bases.
Before and after parting ways with Goodrum, Lotte searched for a new foreign bat to replace him. They are currently in talks with one potential candidate and have four more in the pipeline just in case. Among them, there is a consensus within Lotte that the position of the new foreign batsman will be an outfielder. This is in line with the majority opinion that an infielder will be brought in to minimize the gap in the starting second base position of Ahn “Captain” Chi-hong, who left for the Hanwha Eagles.
Lotte is taking a broad look at the foreign player market, including the results of the MLB’s Rule 5 draft, which runs through June 6 (local time). Among them is Nick Senzel, a center fielder. Born in 1995, the American-born Nick Senzel was selected by the Cincinnati Reds with the second overall pick in the first round of the 2016 First-Year Player Draft. However, he was granted a non-tender release by Cincinnati last month and is now a free agent.
Senzel made his big league debut in 2019, hitting .256 with 12 home runs, 42 RBI, 30 walks, and a .742 OPS in 104 games that year. Through five seasons in Cincinnati’s Major League (ML) organization, Senzel has a career ML batting average of .239 with 294 hits, 33 home runs, and an OPS of 0.671. His minor league numbers are even better, with a .303 batting average, 29 home runs, 138 RBI, and an OPS of 0.872.
With the uncertain nature of the foreign market, there is also the possibility of bringing in players who are already proven. Jason Martin and Anthony Alford are two examples. Martin and Alford failed to re-sign with their original teams, the NC Dinos and KT Wiz, respectively, after this season 아톰카지노. Given the lack of big guns in Lotte’s batting lineup, their arrival would provide some momentum. It will be interesting to see if Lotte can successfully farm in foreigners and challenge for the top spot next season.