Happy Wednesday, Athletics Nation!
Recently acquired starting pitcher Drew Rucinski has been in professional baseball since 2011, but he’s only logged 54 innings in the majors. However, he’s been a true workhorse overseas in the KBO for the past four years, making him a strong candidate for the A’s rotation in the coming season.
In a profile of the 34-year-old righty, Jack Magruder at MLB.com noted that Rucinski pitched 734⅔ innings through his past four seasons pitching in Korea. His production through that period is a portrait of consistency, as Rucinski started between 30 and 33 starts as well as between 177 and 193 innings pitched in each of those KBO seasons.
Rucinski, who signed a one-year, $3 million contract with the A’s for 2023, played a key role in the NC Dinos’ successful 2020 Korean Series championship run, winning 19 games in the regular season and two more in the postseason.
Furthermore, Rucinski’s KBO stats indicate a strong goodness-of-fit with playing conditions at the Oakland Coliseum: he’s established a reputation for pumping strikes with a five-pitch mix, and he recorded a 2.68 groundball-to-flyball ratio that should play well at pitcher-friendly Rickey Henderson field.
“I want to be part of something building [in Oakland],” said Rucinski.
Given his age, it may be difficult to imagine that Rucinski will still be around when the A’s next window of contention opens, but the A’s starters surprise us all the time.
Welcome to Oakland and good luck in Spring Training, Drew Rucinski!
- Willis: Oakland A’s 2023 Community Prospect List No. 14
- Magruder: After stacking innings in KBO, Rucinski back in US
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Best of Twitter:
A’s announce Spring Training broadcast schedule.
Don’t miss any of the action! https://t.co/Bv5LmEkPhD pic.twitter.com/xvyHEtUDTY— Oakland A's (@Athletics) February 21, 2023
Tony is back!
.@tonykemp and the gang are back! pic.twitter.com/2jh1N1bczg— The Rickey Henderson of Blogs (@RickeyBlog) February 21, 2023
Muller v Muncy.
Lefty Kyle Muller, rotation candidate acquired from Atlanta in the Sean Murphy trade, with Max Muncy, the A’s 2021 first-round pick, in the box: pic.twitter.com/MAedKzW5VK— Matt Kawahara (@matthewkawahara) February 21, 2023
Hey Cole, you’re an Oreo. I mean, Oriole.
#NewProfilePic We have one more step to accomplish the ultimate profile pic…. Can you guess what it is? pic.twitter.com/d1uo5kTTl9— Cole Irvin (@Swirvin_irvin19) February 22, 2023
The 2003 ALDS started well..
"Holy Toledo! The element of surprise reigns supreme!"— The Rickey Henderson of Blogs (@RickeyBlog) February 21, 2023
Bill King's call of Ramón Hernández's walk-off bunt in the 12th inning of 2003 ALDS Game 1 ️ pic.twitter.com/ww1JgjZHPt