Jun-Seok Shim was the Pirates’ biggest international signing last off-season. Shim opted to find a contract overseas in the United States instead of heading into the Korean Baseball Organization draft. But Shim’s first season with the Pirates was fairly short-lived.
Shim pitched just eight innings, missing time due to injuries. However, he pitched well when he was able to throw, allowing just three earned runs, walking three batters, and striking out 13. There, of course, aren’t many conclusions you can make off of a sample size that amounts to less than one whole game.
Shim throws hard and sits mid-90s with his fastball. His curveball is arguably his best-breaking ball. It has 12-6 action, but his slider also has good right-to-left movement. His changeup is the 4th pitch of his arsenal, but it does have solid potential. He’s not just a flamethrower with no control, either. He’s an athletic pitcher with a relatively low-effort delivery.
Shim turns 20 right as the season gets started. His birthday is April 9th, which is four days into the regular minor league season for Bradenton and the first road game for them as well. In some cases, I think the player would start the year at the Florida Complex League. But we are talking about a pretty decent talent here. This is probably the equivalent of a late first-round or early second-round high school pick in their second year as a pro ball player. I would lean toward him making it to Bradenton to start the season.