Chong deciding between Korea and Orioles -- not a medical holdup
South Korean right-hander Chong Tae-Hyon is deciding between staying in his native country to continue to play baseball or accept the Orioles’ offer to join their 40-man roster.
The holdup in signing the 33-year-old submariner is not medical but instead is based on whether he wants to leave Korea for the United States.
Orioles executive vice president Dan Duquette said he hopes to have a decision in a week or so. This is the first time Chong has been a free agent, and the eight-time Korean Baseball Organization All-Star is being pursued heavily in his own country.
If Chong chooses the Orioles – who likely would be offering a multiyear deal and a 40-man roster spot – he would be the first player to go directly from the KBO to the majors. That certainly has its allure.
The Orioles had hoped that Chong would sign last week. He has been in for a physical, but the sides have not reached an official agreement.