Korean Posting System

Definition

Players from Korea's top league -- the Korea Baseball Organization (KBO) -- who do not have the requisite nine years of professional experience to gain international free agency can request to be "posted" for Major League clubs. When a KBO club posts a player, all 30 Major League clubs are allowed to place a blind bid for exclusive negotiating rights -- which afford the highest bidder one month to work out a contract with that player. If the two sides reach an agreement, the bid (or "posting fee") is awarded to the player's former KBO club and is not included in the money given to the player. If an agreement is not reached, the MLB club is refunded its posting fee and the player returns to his original team and is ineligible to be posted again until the following offseason. Under KBO rules, a club is allowed to post only one player at a time and cannot allow more than one player to leave via the posting process per offseason.

The caveat is that foreign-born players are subject to international bonus pool money restrictions unless they are at least 25 years of age and have played as a professional in a foreign league recognized by Major League Baseball for a minimum of six seasons. Under the 2017-21 Collective Bargaining Agreement, each Major League club has a hard cap between $4.75 million and $5.75 million to spend on the non-exempt foreign-born player pool.

Example

In November 2015, the Twins registered the highest bid ($12.85 million) for the rights to negotiate with Nexen Heroes first baseman Byung Ho Park, giving them one month to reach a contract agreement with Park and his representatives. The Twins announced the signing of Park to a four-year, $12 million contract in December 2015, meaning Minnesota spent $24.85 million in total -- $12.85 million of which went to Nexen -- to acquire four guaranteed years of Park's services.

Note: The information contained in this glossary entry is subject to change as details emerge.