Posted December. 22, 2005 03:02,
Big Choi, Choi Hee-seop (26) will stay with Los Angeles Dodgers, at least for now.
Major League Baseball announced on December 21 that Dodgers re-signed the 26-year-old first baseman to a one-year contract for an annual salary of $725,000.
That is more than double his salary of $351,500 this year and is the third-highest amount given to a Korean big leaguer, below Park Chan-hos five-year San Diego contract worth 65 million and Kim Byung-hyuns six-million-dollar salary this year.
It was thought that Choi might leave the Dodgers as a non-tender (a player not offered a contract renewal by his team) player. Although now his stay has been decided with a pay raise, Choi is likely to be trapped in a platoon with right-handed batter Olmedo Saenz and the newly-signed Normar Garciaparra, whom the Dodgers are paying six million a year to play first base.
Choi is likely to end up as a backup first baseman and a lefty pinch-hitter. On the other hand, there is a chance that the Dodgers may be keeping Choi as a trade asset.