9:59pm: The Cardinals are working to get a deal done, per Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic.
9:10pm: The Cardinals appear to be seriously considering a deal with left-hander Kwang-hyun Kim. He’s currently in St. Louis to discuss a contract with the Cardinals and undergo a physical, Jeeho Yoo of Yonhap News tweets. Teams have until Jan. 5 to sign Kim, who’d otherwise likely return to the Korea Baseball Organization for at least another year.
The 31-year-old Kim is coming off an outstanding run as a member of SK Wyverns of the KBO, where he recorded a 3.27 ERA with 7.8 K/9 against 3.5 BB/9 across 1,673 2/3 innings before the club posted him. The former Tommy John surgery patient is free to negotiate with all MLB teams over the next two-plus weeks. If Kim signs with a major league team by Jan. 5, the release fee the Wyverns would receive would hinge on the value of his contract.
Signing Kim would be the second prominent move this offseason in the Cardinals’ rotation. The reigning NL Central champions previously re-upped franchise icon Adam Wainwright to a one-year, $5MM guarantee. As things stand, Wainwright’s slated to rejoin Jack Flaherty, Miles Mikolas and Dakota Hudson as the top four in the Cardinals’ rotation. If Kim hops aboard as the fifth member of that group, it could have an effect on Carlos Martinez, who had typically been a starter during his career before working exclusively as a reliever last season. For now, it’s unclear which role Martinez will take on in 2020.