South Korean pitcher Ryu Hyun-jin has landed a $25.7 million bid from the Los Angeles Dodgers, who have 30 days to negotiate a contract with the Hanwha Eagles player, the National League team said on Saturday.
"We are thrilled to have this exciting opportunity," Dodgers general manager Ned Colletti told Major League Baseball's website. "We have watched Ryu pitch for a long time, and he is another option to consider as we look to improve our team in 2013 and beyond."
If signed, the left-handed Ryu would meet Colletti's hopes of adding a frontline pitcher to a starting rotation that already includes Clayton Kershaw, Chad Billingsley, Josh Beckett, Aaron Harang, Chris Capuano and Ted Lilly.
"He's ready to pitch in the big leagues right now," Ryu's agent Scott Boras told the Los Angeles Times. "He's not a developmental project."
If no deal is reached, Ryu would return to the Eagles and could not participate in another bidding process until next year.
The Chicago Cubs and the Texas Rangers reportedly also were interested in signing the 25-year-old.
Ryu, a seven-year veteran, was the first player to win most valuable player and rookie of the year honors in the same season in Korea in 2006.
An 18-game winner as a rookie, he averaged 15 wins per year until this past season, when the Eagles finished last and Ryu went 9-9 with a 2.66 earned run average in 27 starts. He struck out 210 over 182 2/3 innings.
He helped South Korea to the finals of the 2009 World Baseball Classic and the gold medal in the 2008 Olympic Games.
The bid for Ryu ranks third among posting bids submitted for Asian players, behind $51.7 million for Yu Darvish and $51.1 million for Daisuke Matsuzaka, mlb.com said.
(Writing by Sudipto Ganguly in Mumbai and Gene Cherry in Salvo, North Carolina; editing by Amlan Chakraborty and Stephen Wood)