The Hanwha Eagles of the KBO League have signed pitcher Burch Smith for the 2023 season, according to reports out of South Korea (hat tip to Dan Kurtz of MyKBO.net). Smith’s contract is worth up to $1MM, with the righty receiving a $100K signing bonus, $700K salary, and the opportunity to earn an additional $200K in incentives.
Initially drafted by the Padres in 2011, Smith would quickly debut for the team in 2013, albeit to a lackluster 6.44 ERA in 36 1/3 innings. He was traded to the Rays after the 2014 season and would soon undergo Tommy John surgery, missing the 2015 and 2016 seasons. He returned to the Majors in 2018 with the Royals, but once again pitched to an ineffective 6.92 ERA in 78 innings and was designated for assignment. Smith would go on to have short stints with the Brewers and Giants before latching on to a more permanent role with the Athletics during the 2021 season. Over parts of five MLB seasons, Smith holds a high 6.03 ERA in 191 innings with below-average strikeout and walk rates, 21.3% and 10.1%, respectively.
Smith transitioned overseas for the 2022 season, spending the year with the Saitama Seibu Lions of Japan’s NPB league. He was significantly more effective there, throwing 38 1/3 innings of 3.29 ERA baseball with a 23.7% strikeout rate and 9% walk rate.
Smith, who will be 33 years old in April, is now in line to play his second consecutive season overseas. There is little indication that the veteran reliever received any MLB interest prior to his contract with the Eagles. Instead, Smith will head to South Korea and earn significantly more than what he could have made from a potential minor league contract.
Burch Smith… That Burch Smith?! The same Burch Smith who couldn’t throw a pitch without stick stuff?!?
Bearded Texas Hulk
Playing in Japan sounds fun. You get to see a new culture and it night be a ticket to a new chance in MLB.
John Rocker Fan Club
Too bad he’s playing in Korea.
he did play in Japan last year
And get paid a million dollars for 6-7 months over there
DeGrom Texas Ranger
I am not understanding how random former MLB players resigning is key news. I understand if Tanaka or Choo resigned, but these guys are hardly noteworthy enough to be included in MLB Trade Rumors. I mean, if he played in MLB this past 2022 season, that seems relevant, but this guy was already in foreign baseball.
Just be grateful they bring you these wonderful articles.
Says the one who obviously clicked on the article, at the minimum scrolled down to Leave a Comment and then proceeded to write a paragraph complaining about the article! My solution: DON’T click on the article if you’re not interested in it! Complainers Goins complain! Be GRATEFUL!
*Complainers going to complain
You don’t like it don’t read it. Some of us want this information.
what I am not understanding is how some random chatter with a former name and getting something for free complains about how someone else runs their successful website and has been doing so for over a decade.
My guess is you would complain if someone gave you a free cup of coffee in a black cup instead of blue.
Cry about it, bud.
Do you get upset when they have articles about former players passing away?
They aren’t even playing baseball anymore. Why should they even be mentioned at all!
Because either they are all time good players or something else but don’t complain over spilled milk bud.
Everytime i see this guys name i always think he played on the mets … and he was on the mets for literally a hot minute as he was a rule 5 draft guy that the mets traded away the same day.
I’ve been fortunate to be around 1000’s of MLB ballplayers over the years, and Burch Smith is the most miserable POS I’ve ever met. I hope he gets diarrhea every day in Korea.