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Orioles scouts banned in South Korea

Orioles scouts banned in South Korea

PostPost #1 by Matt P » February 9th, 2012, 5:27 am

The South Korean governing body of baseball has banned scouts from the Baltimore Orioles in Major League Baseball from attending local games, after the Orioles signed a teenage pitcher in a controversial move.

The Korea Baseball Association announced Thursday it has informed the MLB commissioner’s office and the Orioles of its decision, saying scouts from all major league teams in the future signing Korean student athletes not in the final years of their schools will be banned from KBA-sanctioned games. That will include all national high school and university tournaments, often frequented by major league scouts.

“To prevent a further exodus of top prospects, we will limit (major league teams’) access to players,” the KBA said.

The Orioles in January acquired pitcher Kim Seong-min, a 17-year-old left-hander about to enter his final year in high school and reportedly signed him for $550,000.

Kim became only the second South Korean high school sophomore to join a major league club. The KBA prohibits players from contacting local or foreign baseball teams before their final years of study, either at high school or university, and on Wednesday, banned Kim indefinitely from playing and coaching in South Korea for his violation.

The Orioles’ signing also stirred a controversy about major league clubs’ poaching of young South Korean players. While major league clubs are free to sign any Korean player they wish within the rules, including undrafted high school students or graduates, baseball officials here have long complained MLB clubs’ signing of players can make it difficult for South Korea to develop youth baseball programs. (Yonhap News)

Separately from the KBA, the Korea Baseball Organization, which runs the nation’s top baseball league, has lodged a complaint with MLB over the Orioles’ alleged violation of a clause in an agreement between the KBO and MLB.

If a major league club wishes to contact an amateur or professional Korean player who is currently playing or has played in the country, the club must first check the player’s status and availability with the KBO. (Yonhap News)


http://www.koreaherald.com/national/Det ... 0209000754
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Re: Orioles scouts banned in South Korea

PostPost #2 by birdwatcher55 » February 9th, 2012, 1:07 pm

I view this as a real postitive sign in that we're getting people's attention internationally. I also find this kind of funny. How do you ban a scout from watching games?? LOL .. Seems pretty silly for sure :lol:
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Re: Orioles scouts banned in South Korea

PostPost #3 by A_K » February 9th, 2012, 2:56 pm

File this away the next time someone defends a move with the ever present "he's the GM, he knows what he's doing" defense.

Shameful. Ignorant. Foolish. Embarrassing.
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Re: Orioles scouts banned in South Korea

PostPost #4 by Old Sneakers » February 10th, 2012, 9:45 am

A_K wrote:File this away the next time someone defends a move with the ever present "he's the GM, he knows what he's doing" defense.

Shameful. Ignorant. Foolish. Embarrassing.


In all fairness, how do we know another team with a better working relationship with the KBA didn't make a stink about this? All I know is no one from the Orioles put a gun to the player's head. He signed because it was a good deal. My guess is DD and Co. will look like heroes to future prospects wanting a deal with a ML team.

Hardly "Shameful. Ignorant. Foolish. Embarrassing."

Do we even know if any existing rule was actually broken? Can someone quote any agreement between MLB and KBA?
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Re: Orioles scouts banned in South Korea

PostPost #5 by ofahn » February 10th, 2012, 9:56 am

Old Sneakers wrote:My guess is DD and Co. will look like heroes to future prospects wanting a deal with a ML team.


I was thinking the same thing. Many of the Korean players participate in tournaments all over Asia. Agents (advisers/family friends/whatever) will be looking for Orioles scouts to showcase their guy.

All this means is that right now we can't send a scout to an official Korean League game in an Orioles cap. Nothing is stopping us from paying an unaffiliated scout(s) to cover the games. If the Koreans start trying to bounce every scout they think had ever eaten a crab cake they're going to alienate themselves from the rest of the baseball world. This will blow over quickly.
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Re: Orioles scouts banned in South Korea

PostPost #6 by Zach » February 10th, 2012, 11:11 am

This will in the long term hurt Korean baseball. It will start to make teams think twice before scouting Korean prospects. While internally this will initially benefit the korean league, it will cause resentment by the players. Top players want to play with other top players, thus why we see a talent flight from Japan at the highest level. Korea needs to diplomatically handle this situation so that it quietly blows over for the sake of their relationship with MLB.
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Re: Orioles scouts banned in South Korea

PostPost #7 by A_K » February 10th, 2012, 2:16 pm

So the contortions have begun. Long live the powers of rationalization. This is a fantastic spin though. We're liberators! Long live the Orioles!

We've burned a bridge with one of the world's fastest growing prospect hot beds. This isn't a good thing. We can disagree on how much it's a bad thing, but please let's not pretend it's a good thing. C'mon now.
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Re: Orioles scouts banned in South Korea

PostPost #8 by ofahn » February 10th, 2012, 3:08 pm

A_K wrote:please let's not pretend it's a good thing


All I'm saying is this isn't a BIG thing, and it will blow over quickly.
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Re: Orioles scouts banned in South Korea

PostPost #9 by A_K » February 10th, 2012, 4:46 pm

ofahn wrote:
A_K wrote:please let's not pretend it's a good thing


All I'm saying is this isn't a BIG thing, and it will blow over quickly.


I agree that it isn't a big thing. To date, there haven't been any South Korean baseball players that were so good that the lack of access to potentially signing them would have been a damning element of any organization. We could most certainly be highly competitive while never stepping foot in Seoul again, whether by our edict or theirs. it isn't a big deal, in and of itself.

The reason I said it was shameful, ignorant, foolish and embarrassing was based on matters outside of baseball. International scouting is diplomacy. It involves cultural understanding, patience and tact. At least, it requires those things to be done well. You want a good relationship with the host country's governing body, a high degree of understanding of cultural norms, and a demonstration of respect for both of those things. This is a long-term investment, not a short-term push to add talent to the system.

What we did is the cultural equivalent of being a picky eater at an international table. It's a sensitive balance, and we acted like ugly Americans. The KBO ban is a symptom. The belief that we didn't need to work with them is the disease.
Last edited by A_K on February 10th, 2012, 7:54 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Orioles scouts banned in South Korea

PostPost #10 by birdwatcher55 » February 10th, 2012, 7:02 pm

Maybe we will be welcomed in North Korea :lol:
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Re: Orioles scouts banned in South Korea

PostPost #11 by Jordan Tuwiner » February 10th, 2012, 7:48 pm

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Re: Orioles scouts banned in South Korea

PostPost #12 by Old Sneakers » February 11th, 2012, 2:27 pm

To A_K, please do not think I was attempting to be disrespectful. Also if the ban on Oriole Scouts is a problem that could have long term effects in Korea, I suspect the team will try to smooth the waters so they aren't held up in the future. I suspect your saying the team was making a mad dash at a prospect to beat out other teams. That may be so. Unfortunately it seems to me that the club hasn't excelled with international prospects. I think it has to make a splash anyway it can.
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