We knew that top KBO shortstop, and top international prospect, Ha-Seong Kim is going to be posted to MLB this offseason, and we know the arguments on why he’s a perfect fit for the Cubs (even if we doubt their eagerness to spend this offseason (again)).
But what we didn’t know until now is what the timeline would look like for the KBO posting process in this uneven 2020 timeline.
Per a report out of Korea, the KBO posting period will open up on November 10 this year, and conclude on December 14. That means teams will officially be able to start negotiating with Kim in a little under a month, assuming he’s posted soon after the period opens, and then will have to have a deal completed by right around the traditional Winter Meetings timeline (what those meetings will or won’t look like this year is still TBD). That works out fairly well for the MLB offseason timeline, and won’t see related/interconnected moves held up too much or too long.
Once Kim is actually posted, he can negotiate with MLB teams for up to 30 days. The signing team will owe his former KBO team a posting fee:
20% of the contract’s first $25M
17.5% of the contract’s next $25M
15% of anything beyond $50M
So let’s say, for example, that Kim signs a deal worth $75 million (which is completely made up, because we don’t know what a deal will look like in this environment, and he’d likely get much more than that in a normal scenario). The team would actually pay out $88.125 million total ($75M to Kim and $13.125M to the KBO Kiwoom Heroes as the posting fee).