Robert Stock Close To Signing With KBO’s Doosan Bears
Right-handed pitcher Robert Stock is close to signing with the Doosan Bears of the Korea Baseball Organization, reports Daniel Kim, relaying information from Korean media organizations. He says that there is no official deal just yet but that it “sounds close”.
Stock was selected by St. Louis in the second round of the 2009 draft but didn’t make his MLB debut until 2018, spending time in the organizations of the Cardinals, Pirates and Reds before finally making it to the show with the Padres. In addition to the Padres, Stock has seen some MLB action with the Red Sox, Cubs and Mets over the past four seasons. (He was also claimed by the Phillies after the 2019 season but was designated for assignment before the 2020 season began.) He has 72 2/3 MLB innings under his belt, with an ERA of 4.71, strikeout rate of 23.1% and walk rate of 12.2%.
In 2021, he was only able to throw nine total innings in the big leagues over three starts, putting up an ERA of 8.00. But in 35 1/3 Triple-A innings, he had a 3.57 ERA, along with a very good strikeout rate of 26.2% and walk rate of 8.1%. He was with the Mets when a hamstring strain landed him on the IL in July, an injury that ended his season. He was outrighted off the roster in October and elected free agency.
After years off bouncing from team to team and from the minors to the majors, Stock, 32, now seems to be heading for a job in Korea that will likely provide him more regular playing time and better pay than he would have received with another season as a journeyman in North America. If he is able to thrive in this new opportunity, he could always return to MLB with increased interest from clubs, as many other have done in recent years. As mentioned by Kim, the Bears signed Chris Flexen a couple of years ago, who pitched well enough to garner a two-year contract from the Mariners prior to the 2021 season.