The Doosan Bears appear to be in deep trouble over foreign hitter Jose Rojas. This is why Rojas, who has a large ‘left-right deviation’, can continue to be a poor player in the team’s batting lineup. First, it is expected that the foreign market situation will be monitored this winter and a decision will be made on whether to renew LOHAS’ contract.도메인
Rojas joined Doosan in the 2023 season and left a strong first impression with a walk-off home run in the opening game of the regular season.
However, Rojas went into a severe batting slump during the first half of the year and returned to the second team. Rojas, who had a batting average of 0.222/45 hits/10 home runs/33 RBIs in the first half, began to rebound little by little when hitting coach Lee Young-soo was promoted to the first team in early July and served as a dedicated coach.
Rojas showed a significantly better batting performance than the first half in the second half with a batting average of 0.285/57 hits/9 home runs/32 RBI. In the first game of the postseason wild card game, Rojas hit hard with 2 hits, 1 home run, 1 RBI, and 1 run. The scene where he immediately hit a home run over the right wall, even though he was in pain after being hit in the foot by a foul ball he swung, was a highlight.
Rojas’ final performance in the 2023 season was 122 game appearances/102 hits/19 home runs/65 RBI/on-base percentage of 0.345/slugging percentage of 0.474. Considering the batting indicators that improved in the second half of the year, it is a figure that can be enough to consider renewing his contract.
However, the concern of the Doosan team lies in the left and right deviation of Rojas. Rojas is a left-handed pitcher compared to right-handed pitchers (batting average of 0.256/67 hits/15 home runs/49 RBI/37 walks/40 strikeouts) and under-pitchers (batting average of 0.324/12 hits/3 home runs/6 RBI/3 walks/strikeouts) in the 2023 season. (Batting average of 0.221/23 hits/1 home run/10 RBI/15 walks/21 strikeouts) showed clear weaknesses. In fact, Rojas was often left out of the starting lineup during the 2023 season when his opponent was a left-handed pitcher.
A Doosan official said, “The decision on whether to renew Rojas’ contract can be viewed as a temporary hold. He is not in a situation where he can completely decide whether to renew his contract or not. If a situation arises where one of the currently selected foreign player candidates appears on the 40-man roster or can sign a contract, that direction can be prioritized. However, if the situation is not favorable, renewing the LOHAS contract may be considered. He explained, “Because there is a difference between left and right, it is an issue that we need to spend more time thinking about.”
Foreign pitchers Raul Alcantara and Brandon Waddell are likely to continue together in the 2024 season if there are no major problems at the contract renewal negotiation table. Alcantara pitched in 31 games (192 innings), 13 wins, 9 losses, ERA 2.67, 162 strikeouts, and Brandon appeared in 18 games (104.2 innings), 11 wins, 3 losses, ERA 2.49, and 100 strikeouts.
A Doosan official said, “If there are no problems at the contract renewal negotiation table, we will continue to work with the two foreign pitchers next year.”