The Yankees are scouting KBO first baseman Byung-Ho Park, Chosun Ilbo reports (link in Korean; hat tip to Brendan Kuty of NJ.com). As Kuty notes, the Yankees’ level of interest is unclear, and they have Mark Teixeira under contract for 2016 and Greg Bird potentially ready to take over at first base after that. Nonetheless, Park will be a tempting option, assuming the Nexen Heroes post him after the season. He’s hit .351/.442/.727 this year and has totaled 100 homers in the last two seasons. The KBO is an offense-heavy environment, but the success of Park’s former teammate Jung-Ho Kang in Pittsburgh makes it appear likely that Park’s skills will translate fairly well to the Majors. Here’s more from the East divisions.
- At 68-72, the Orioles are still expected to push as hard as possible for the playoffs even though their chances of getting there are remote. They should consider trying equally hard in these next few weeks to keep at least some of their pending free agents, Peter Schmuck of the Baltimore Sun writes. Scott Boras clients Chris Davis and Matt Wieters are likely to test free agency, but the team ought to consider trying to re-sign reliever Darren O’Day, who might require a three-year deal in the $20MM range. (MLBTR’s Jeff Todd profiled O’Day earlier this week.) Gerardo Parra might also be a good candidate for the Orioles to re-sign before free agency begins, Schmuck suggests.
- It’s been a lost season for the Marlins, and their struggles extend to their minor league system, Clark Spencer of the Miami Herald writes. Three of the Marlins’ top four affiliates finished in last place, and the Marlins rank at the bottom of Baseball America’s Organization Standings. That’s not necessarily the kiss of death, since minor league records aren’t always the best indicators of prospect quality. But experts agree that the Marlins aren’t exactly spilling over with top prospects, other than top 2014 pick Tyler Kolek. “[Y]ou go beyond [Kolek], and you get to guys who are not top 200- or 300-type guys,” says BA’s J.J. Cooper. “I have talked to scouts who struggle to name a player or two they project as future regulars from the Marlins’ position-player prospects.” The Marlins recently attempted to address the issue by hiring Marc DelPiano from the Pirates to oversee their minor league operations.