Pittsburgh Pirates: Two Former Pitchers Make Starts in KBO


The Pittsburgh Pirates are still waiting to find out when their 2020 season will get underway.  However, the Korean Baseball Organization has started playing games.

Last night was a big deal for the sports world, the Korean Baseball Organization officially started their 2020 season.  While the Pittsburgh Pirates and the rest of Major League Baseball anxiously wait for the start of their season, the KBO started playing regular-season games without fans.  Furthermore, ESPN was able to work out a deal with the KBO to broadcast the games.  This not only is giving us meaningful baseball to watch, but there is also intrigue to see some former MLB players.

This is especially true for Pittsburgh Pirates fans.  Last night, the Pittsburgh Pirates saw two of their former pitchers make starts in the KBO.  One of the pitchers was former top 100 prospect Nick Kingham and the other is now veteran Jake Brigham.

Of the two, Kingham is the most recognizable being a former top prospect.  The Pittsburgh Pirates drafted Nick Kingham in 2014 and he quickly ascended the minor league system and actually posted better numbers than top prospect Jameson Taillon.  However, after being ranked as a top 100 prospect during the 2015 preseason, it was announced that Kingham would miss the entire season due to Tommy-John Surgery.  When he came back and made his big league début, he did not look like the power pitcher the Bucs drafted.

Now Kingham is pitching for the SK Wyverns in the KBO.  He made his KBO début last night throwing seven solid innings and got the win.  He allowed three earned runs in his seven frames and struck out four.  Kingham took the loss, however, after his team was held to just two hits.

Brigham pitched for the Pittsburgh Pirates organization back in 2014 but never made an appearance with the big league team.  He pitched with Triple-A Indianapolis and owned an ERA north of 4.00.  He has been playing in the KBO since May 2017, when he played for the Nexen Heroes.

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Now he is playing for Kiwoom.  Brigham made the opening day start for them last night.  He was only able to make it through 3.1 innings but was effective in his work.  Brigham did not allow a run and gave up just four baserunners while striking out two.  He was pulled from the start early because of a delay in the game.