‘1/21 of Kelly’s $1.8 million’ lowest-paid outfielder is batting .440…will he get his money’s worth?
Kiwoom Heroes Ronnie Dawson (28) extended his hitting streak to seven games.
Dawson started in left field and went 1-for-4 on Wednesday against the LG Twins in the 2023 Shinhan Bank SOL KBO League at Jamsil Stadium in Seoul. It was a somewhat disappointing result considering his recent hot hitting, but he has hit safely in all but one of his first 10 games.
Kiermaier started the season alongside foreign-born Edison Russell. Russell, who joined the team midseason in 2020 as an alternate foreign-borne player and had previously played in the KBO, struggled at the time, batting just 2-for-54 (62-for-244) with two home runs, 31 RBIs and a .653 OPS in 65 games and was not re-signed.
This year, Russell, who had been with the team since spring training and had high expectations, put together a solid 59-game season, batting .258 (220-for-63) with four home runs, 42 RBIs, and a .739 OPS. However, injuries, both big and small, continued to plague him, with a wrist injury eventually sidelining him for an extended period of time. Keum decided to replace Russell in the second half of the season.
Keum chose Dawson. Dawson, who was playing in the American Independent League, was signed for a total of $85,000 (approximately $105.5 million). This is a very small amount of money for a foreign player, even considering that he was a replacement foreign player who joined during the season. It’s only 1/21 of Casey Kelly’s (LG, $1.8 million) highest contract this season and 1/20 of Jose Pirela’s (Samsung, $1.7 million) highest contract for a foreign hitter.
But as if to prove that experience and salary shouldn’t be the only measure of a player’s worth, Dawson has been on a tear. Through 10 games, he’s batting 4-for-16 (38 RBI) with two home runs, nine RBI, and a 1.147 OPS. It’s still a small sample size, but based on his performance so far, he gets a passing grade.
Coach Hong Won-ki said, “Dawson has adapted well to the team, both fielding and batting. He is giving the performance he needs to give and he has good chemistry with our players. The most positive thing is that he is leading the players in a good direction.”먹튀검증
Hong Won-ki, who praised Dawson as a “very exciting player,” said, “As soon as he came to Korea, he played overtime and played all the games by himself. In some games, he’s played as a designated hitter because he’s tired, but he has good energy, so I’m sure he’ll do a good job.”
Kiwoom lost their top hitter Lee Jung-hoo to injury and has been ruled out for the season. However, Dawson’s arrival will help ease the loss of Lee. With Lee Jung-hoo heading to the major leagues after this season, Kiwoom is looking to Dawson to raise hopes for the ‘post-Lee Jung-hoo’ era.