With the NC Dinos posting Sung-Bum Na for MLB teams to bid on, another outfielder joined the free agent market. One the Washington Nationals should inquire about.
Thirty days is what the Washington Nationals have to work out a deal with Sung-Bum Na, the latest Korean slugger to hit the American market. While the Nationals are usually not big participants in this market, they should do their due diligence here.
With the Winter Meetings about to be in the rear view mirror and little indication what the Nationals are thinking in way of free agents (other than their presumed interest in Carlos Santana), Na could be a guy of interest for a team not wanting to break the bank this offseason.
Having spent the past eight years in the Korean Baseball Organization, Na is described as a five tool player. Throwing out his injury riddled season of 2019, he boasts on average 25 home runs and over 100 RBIs a season while hitting at a .317 clip for his career.
Recovering from knee surgery moved the former center fielder to right field, and forced him into the designated hitter role most of the past season.
While Marcell Ozuna and George Springer remain the sexy options in the outfield, Na would not be a bad conciliation prize, and a cheaper one at that.
Any team who agrees to a contract with Na will have to pay the Dinos a posting fee, on top of the salary the player will earn.
The money is a question, the health of his knee may be concerning, and whether or not the Nationals should invest in a guy who hasn’t proven himself against American Major League pitching, are all items which need to be discussed at great length.
One scout had the following interpretation of Na:
"“I don’t have real high hopes for him in MLB,” the scout said. “He doesn’t have any specific separating tool outside of maybe his arm. His power is not outstanding for MLB, he’s not the type of defender you could see filling in at center. There’s a real question of how he’d do against velocity and quality breaking balls.”"
His power may not outstanding, but his career OPS is .926. Better numbers than every regular the Nationals sent out last year not named Juan Soto or Trea Turner.
Is Sung-Bum Na a fit. Yes. Should the Nationals be talking to his representation (who happens to be the Boras Corporation, and you know the relationship there with the Nats), yes. Should the Nationals overspend on this guy. No. Na is worth a look and the Nationals would be wise to take it.