The Hanwha Eagles of the Korea Baseball Organization announced that they’ve signed right-hander Warwick Saupold and left-hander Chad Bell to one-year contracts (hat tip: Dan Kurtz of MyKBO.net, on Twitter). Saupold will earn a total of $1MM — $300K signing bonus and $700K salary — while Bell will receive a $200K signing bonus and a $400K salary. As Kurtz further notes, the KBO recently amended some rules preventing first-year foreign players from signing for more than a total of $1MM. Saupold is repped by the Ballplayers Agency, while Bell is a client of the Bledsoe Agency.
Saupold, 29 in January, has spent parts of the past three seasons with the Tigers. The Australian-born righty has compiled 106 2/3 innings at the big league level to this point in his career, working to a 4.98 earned run average with 70 strikeouts against 46 walks out of the Detroit bullpen. His work in the minors has been considerably more impressive, as he sports a 3.39 ERA with 7.0 K/9 against 3.1 BB/9 in 188 2/3 frames with the Tigers’ top affiliate. He’s been with the Tigers organization since the age of 22, and he spent the two seasons prior to that pitching for his hometown Perth Heat of the Australian Baseball League.
Bell, 30 in February, was Saupold’s teammate with Detroit from 2017-18, though he finished out the ’18 campaign as a member of the Braves organization after being claimed off waivers in mid-May. He’s been knocked around for a 7.11 ERA in 69 2/3 MLB innings but managed a more palatable 4.27 ERA with 7.7 K/9 against 3.6 BB/9 in 270 Triple-A innings.