Former Oakland A’s playing in the Korean Baseball Organization
By David Hill
Now that ESPN is slated to televise games from the Korean Baseball Organization, let’s look at some former Oakland A’s playing in South Korea.
For the first time in far too long, professional baseball will be back on the airwaves. ESPN came to an agreement to air games from the Korean Baseball Organization, giving fans an opportunity to watch the sport they love.
There will also be a few familiar faces on these teams. Former major league players dot the KBO, as players, coaches, or managers. Fans of virtually every team have players to root for, even if those players did not pan out during their major league careers.
The Oakland A’s have plenty of representation as well. Three former members of the organization are playing in the KBO, all of which had varying degrees of success in the majors. Interestingly, all three former A’s are pitchers.
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Aaron Brooks finds himself pitching for the Kia Tigers. Originally acquired along with Sean Manaea as part of the deal that sent Ben Zobrist to Kansas City, Brooks was a part of the A’s organization twice. In his time with the A’s, he posted a 5.71 ERA and a 1.413 WHiP, striking out 79 batters with 30 walks in 104 innings.
Raul Alcantara is back in Korea for his second season, suiting up for the Doosan Bears. He pitched for the KT Wiz last year, posting an 11-11 record with a 4.03 ERA and a 1.251 WHiP. In his 172.1 innings, he struck out 100 batters while issuing 27 walks. Those numbers were a marked improvement over his performance with the A’s from 2016 through 2017, where Alcantara posted a 7.19 ERA and a 1.489 WHiP in 46.1 innings, striking out 26 batters with 16 walks.
Finally, Dan Straily is looking to resurrect his career with the Lotte Giants. Easily the most accomplished of the former A’s, he spent parts of three seasons in Oakland until he was sent to Chicago as part of the package for Jeff Samardzija and Jason Hammel. During his time in Oakland, Straily posted a 13-11 record with a 4.11 ERA and a 1.257 WHiP. In his 230 innings, Straily struck out 190 batters while issuing 88 walks.
The Oakland A’s are well represented in the Korean Baseball Organization. As ESPN is set to televise those contests, there will be some familiar faces on the screen.