The Hanwha Eagles of the Korea Baseball Organization re-signed right-hander Nick Kingham and left-hander Ryan Carpenter to new one-year contracts earlier this month. According to Jeeho Yoo of Yonhap News, Kingham will receive $900K in guaranteed salary, while Carpenter gets $750K. The new deals represent nice raises for both pitchers, as Carpenter signed for $300K and Kingham for $250K last winter.
Kingham missed much of the 2020 season due to elbow surgery, and made only two starts for the SK Wyverns before the KBO club released him in July 2020. Looking to rebound with the Eagles, Kingham largely stayed healthy (except for a month-long absence with a lat injury) and posted a 3.19 ERA and 22.16% strikeout rate over 144 innings last season. As Kingham told Yoo in a recent interview, he believes he can pitch even better in 2022, as he enters the new year focused only on normal offseason preparations without any injury rehab.
After pitching for the Rakuten Monkeys of the Chinese Professional Baseball League in 2020, Carpenter performed well in his debut KBO season. The southpaw posted a 3.97 ERA and 23.99% strikeout rate over 170 innings for the Eagles, starting 30 of his 31 games.
Both pitchers looked for a fresh start overseas after appearing in parts of the 2018 and 2019 MLB seasons. Kingham, a former top prospect during his days in the Pirates farm system, has a 6.08 ERA over 131 2/3 career Major League frames with Pittsburgh and Toronto. All of Carpenter’s big league experience came in a Tigers uniform, as he posted an 8.57 ERA over 63 innings (starting 14 of 15 games) with Detroit.