It was in 2010 when Choi Ji-man graduated from Dongsan High School in Incheon that he entered American baseball.
Choi Ji-man, who joined the Seattle Mariners after receiving a contract fee of 425,000 dollars, gradually progressed from the rookie league. He made his major league debut with the Los Angeles Angels in 2016, then went through the New York Yankees, Milwaukee Brewers, and Tampa Bay Rays before being traded to the Pittsburgh Pirates in November of last year and met the 7th team in his big league career.
This year marks the 14th year since I set foot on American soil. He was already well over thirty. Choi Ji-man, who was a promising catcher at Dongsan High School, is now waiting for a new season as Pittsburgh’s first baseman and designated hitter.
However, Choi Ji-man could not finalize his salary renewal this year and was forced to wait for the decision of the salary adjustment hearing. In the major leagues, the 14th (Korean time) was the deadline for contract renewal agreements between players eligible for salary adjustment and clubs. Players and clubs who could not reach an agreement each submitted their desired amount to the Salary Adjustment Committee on the same day.
According to MLB Network reporter Mark Finesand, Choi Ji-man spent 5.4 million dollars and the Pittsburgh club spent 4.65 million dollars. Matt Swartz of MLB Trade Rumors, an expert on annual salary adjustments, predicted Choi Ji-man’s annual salary this season at $4.5 million. If an agreement is not reached, the Salary Adjustment Committee will raise one of the two hands. Choi Ji-man won the salary adjustment hearing in February 2021, when he was in Tampa Bay. At the time, Choi Ji-man submitted $2.45 million and the Tampa Bay team submitted $1.85 million, respectively.
But this time, Pittsburgh’s offer is more than that. In other words, even if an agreement is reached between the two sides’ claim amount of $5 million, neither the club nor Choi will lose. 메이저사이트
If so, how much money has Choi Ji-man earned so far? According to Spottrak, an American professional sports salary website, his cumulative annual salary from 2016 when he debuted in the major leagues to last year is $7.59 million. When adding the signing bonus he received when he joined Seattle and the annual salary he received for six years in the minor leagues, it is estimated that he earned a total of about $8.3 million during his 13 years in the United States.
It was only in 2021 and last year that Choi Ji-man received a salary that was below the annual salary. Even though he played 5 full-time major league seasons, his cumulative annual salary is less than 10 million dollars. He said that he didn’t have a chance to play as a starter. Choi Ji-man has never had a season in which he filled the regulation plate. It is because he competed according to the platoon method. His image of being weak against left-handed pitchers was too strong.
Although they attacked left-handed pitchers in the first half of last year, Tampa Bay coach Kevin Cash insisted on platooning with right-handed hitters such as Harold Ramirez and Yandi Diaz. In the second half, his appearances were uneven, and even his sense of hitting dropped, eventually ending the season with a batting average of 0.233, 11 homers, and 52 RBIs.
If Choi Ji-man had been the starting player who filled the regular at-bats from 2020, just before he qualified for his first salary adjustment, his salary would have jumped exponentially. However, he is expected to earn only $5 million this year following $2.45 million in 2021 and $3.2 million last year.
When Choi Ji-man finishes his season, he will complete 6 full-time seasons and obtain FA qualification. The most important thing for him is to fill the regular at-bat as a starter in good health. Then, he can receive the first multi-year contract of his life and a generous treatment of more than 10 million dollars in total.