Lotte Giants right-hander Dan Strayley (35) was released. Considering his current skills and age, it is safe to say that his career in Korea has come to an end.
Lotte requested the KBO to disclose Strayley’s waiver on the 18th, and hired Aaron Wilkerson (34) as a new foreign pitcher for a total of $350,000 ($250,000 annual salary, $100,000 option). Lotte finished the first half with a 50% win rate collapsed with 38 wins and 39 losses, and chose to replace Strayley as the number of wins to rebound in the second half.
Even three years ago, no one would have imagined the picture of Strayley being released to Lotte. Strayley drew attention as an ace pitcher from the time he first signed with Lotte in 2020 and came to Korea. He was an experienced pitcher who had spent 8 seasons in the major leagues, and the American media even evaluated that he was likely to make a comeback in the United States using his KBO League challenge as a stepping stone.
Strayley performed the best in Lotte foreign pitcher history with 15 wins and 4 losses, 194⅔ innings, 205 strikeouts, and an average ERA of 2.50 in 31 games in 2020. The 15 wins was the most recorded in a season by a foreign pitcher belonging to Lotte, and he won the strikeout king for the first time as a foreign pitcher in the club. As a Lotte pitcher, he was also the first strikeout king in 24 years since Joo Hyeong-gwang (221) in 1996.
However, after that, I couldn’t make a strong impression like the first year of the contract. Although he won 10 games in 2021 as well, his innings were reduced to 162, and his earned run average was high at 4.07. Lotte still tried to accompany Strayley, but it was inevitable to show interest in Strayley in the United States, where pitcher supply and demand became unstable due to the influence of the pandemic. Strayley signed a minor league contract with the Arizona Diamondbacks and eventually left Lotte.
It didn’t take long for them to reunite. Lotte brought Strayley back in August of last year for $400,000. Strayley did not get a chance to call up the big leagues, and he had no choice but to respond to Lotte’s call. In 11 games last year, Strayley recorded 4 wins and 2 losses, 62⅓ innings, and an average ERA of 2.31, which seemed to announce the resurgence of the ace. This is why Lotte gave another 1 million dollars ahead of this season.
Strayley was expected to play an active role as the most stable one-two punch in the league along with Charlie Barnes this year. He had the advantage of being a proven pitcher who could be responsible for 10 wins as long as he was not sick. He went 3-5 in 16 games with a 4.37 earned run average in 80⅓ innings pitched. There must have been a downside to being a pitcher who was exposed to a lot of KBO hitters, but there were many opinions that the pitch itself was poor in the field.
As the first half came to a close, rumors spread that Lotte was considering replacing a foreign pitcher. Barnes, who had his ups and downs, was also considered for replacement, but in the end, Strayley left the team. It was regrettable that the ending with a long-lived foreign player who had been together for four years was eventually released, but it was an unavoidable choice for Lotte, which had to aim for the top 5 or higher.스포츠토토
After Strayley broke up with Lotte, it should be seen that his career in Korea was virtually over. It is all the more so because it was a replacement without an injury reason. Lotte and Strayley now only have to wish each other well.