CARLSBAD, Calif. ---Jung Ho Kang's free agency didn't last long as the Pirates re-signed the third baseman to a one-year, $3-million contract Thursday as the General Managers Meetings came to a close at the Mesa La Costa Resort & Spa. As part of the deal, Kang can make an additional $2.5 million in performance bonuses.
Kang would receive $625,000 each for 200, 300, 400 and 500 plate appearances. The contract also has a provision to allow Kang to again become a free agent following next season, though he would need have the requisite six years of major league service time to be eligible.
Kang became a free agent last week when the Pirates declined the $5.5-million club option in his contact for 2019. They instead paid the 31-year-old a $250,000 buyout.
Kang has played in just three games for the Pirates over the last two seasons because of legal problems in his native South Korea stemming from a third DUI arrest in December 2016. He was unable to secure a work visa in 2017 and was finally cleared to come to the United States this year in April, played 16 games in the minor leagues then underwent wrist surgery.