Lotte Giants release outfielder DJ Peters
The Lotte Giants on Monday announced that they were placing outfielder DJ Peters on waivers, parting ways with the KBO rookie after he failed to live up to defensive expectations.
The Giants are yet to name a replacement for Peters, saying Monday that an announcement will follow soon.
Former major leaguer Peters joined the Giants in December last year on a one-year deal worth up to $680,000. He joined the KBO just months after making his major league debut with the Los Angeles Dodgers. He was seen at the time as a relatively unusual signing as he arrived in Korea not as an aging slugger, as is often the case, but as a speedy 25-year-old that could use his experience here as a stepping stone to return to the majors.
But while Peters leaves the Giants with a .228 batting average, 48 RBIs and 13 home runs, he failed to live up to expectations in defense. He was expected to be a strong, fast presence in the outfield, but ended up posting some of the worst numbers on defense of any center fielder in the KBO.
Peters is the latest in a long run of foreign players to face the chop over the last month as KBO teams look to shake things up before they start their final run on toward a playoff spot. The league is currently in the middle of the All-Star break with games set to resume on Friday.
With a little fewer than 60 games left to play in the 144-game season, the SSG Landers currently lead the KBO with a 4.5-game margin over the second-place Kiwoom Heroes. The LG Twins follow to round off the top three, and then there is a seven-game drop to the KT Wiz in fourth and the Kia Tigers in fifth.
The Giants sit another four games behind those five playoff spots, followed two games later by the Doosan Bears, with the Samsung Lions and NC Dinos slightly further back in eighth and ninth and then the Hanwha Eagles trailing by an additional eight games.
BY JIM BULLEY [firstname.lastname@example.org]