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KBO-MLB talks over posting fee cap scrapped

All News 14:58 April 28, 2016

By Yoo Jee-ho

SEOUL, April 28 (Yonhap) -- Talks between the Korea Baseball Organization (KBO) and Major League Baseball (MLB) on a bid cap for posted South Korean players have been scrapped, after the two leagues renewed a mutual agreement without changes, officials here said Thursday.

The KBO said it has agreed with MLB to extend the United States-Korean Player Contract Agreement until March 1, 2017, after MLB made the request, citing "reasons related to internal affairs." The deal was set to expire on May 15.

Among other things, the agreement covers the posting system, whereby a KBO player who has completed an equivalent of seven full seasons can make himself available at a silent auction for MLB clubs. Three KBO players have reached the majors via posting, most recently the Minnesota Twins' designated hitter Park Byung-ho.

With the decision, earlier discussions between the two leagues on adopting a cap on the amount of posting bid have been nullified.

In February, MLB proposed a US$8 million cap. MLB and Japan's Nippon Professional Baseball (NPB) also have an agreement that covers the posting system, and they settled on a $20 million cap on the bids in December 2013. The idea was to expand options for posted players and to allow less well-to-do MLB clubs to enter the bidding war for desired players.

The KBO-MLB agreement was initially set to expire on March 15, but the KBO temporarily extended the deadline by two months because it needed more time to discuss the posting fee cap issue. Now that MLB has been granted its wish to extend the deal in its current state, posting fee talks "will go back to square one" according to a KBO official.

If neither side intends to modify or terminate the agreement 180 days prior to the expiration date, then the deal is to be renewed automatically by one year.

jeeho@yna.co.kr
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