Right-hander Chris Flexen is set to join the Doosan Bears of the Korea Baseball Organization, reports Marc Carig of the Athletic (via Twitter). The Mets designated Flexen for assignment yesterday to make way for Brad Brach.
The terms of the deal aren’t yet known, but Flexen will presumably take home significantly more with the Bears than he would’ve had he cleared waivers and remained in the Mets’ system. The 25-year-old has made 27 appearances (11 starts) at the big league level for New York since 2017. They’ve not gone well, as Flexen has a cumulative 8.07 ERA with 49 strikeouts and 54 walks in 68 innings.
Disastrous MLB results aside, Flexen was solid this season with Triple-A Syracuse. In 78.2 innings across 26 games (14 starts) in the hitter-friendly International league, he worked to a 4.46 ERA with a strong combination of strikeouts (26.7%) and walks (6.1%). He also showed a velocity boost in his brief big league time in 2019, averaging 94.54 MPH on his four-seam fastball, up from 93.31 MPH the year prior, per Brooks Baseball.
Between his youth, arm speed and high minors results, it’s easy to see why the Bears are intrigued by Flexen. He’ll need to demonstrate better control in the KBO, but Flexen’s certainly young enough to pop back up on MLB teams’ radars in the future.