CPBL Foreign Players Updates Volume #261
Rakuten Monkeys News: Brandon Waddell
On January 14, the Rakuten Monkeys announced the signing of 28-year-old American left-hander Brandon Waddell for the 2023 CPBL season.
According to the Monkeys GM, they are in the process of getting all the necessary paperwork ready and hope to bring him to Taiwan in early February.
Brandon Waddell began his professional career in 2015 with the Pittsburgh Pirates’ system and eventually made his MLB debut in 2020. In his limited time in the big league, he compiled a 5.68 ERA over 12.2 innings.
In 2022, after spending half a season in Triple-A with a 3.30 ERA over 30 innings, the KBO came knocking. Brandon Waddell ended up joining the Doosan Bears as a mid-season signing to replace Ariel Miranda, who had been sidelined with a shoulder injury. Brandon Waddell finished his 2022 KBO season logging 65 innings with a 3.60 ERA and 1.23 WHIP over 11 starts.
According to the 2022 scouting report, Brandon Waddell primarily used four pitches during his time in the KBO: 4-seam, slider, curveball and changeup.
- Fastball – 147 kph – 41.1%
- Slider – 137 kph – 28.8%
- Curveball – 120 kph – 13.4%
- Changeup – 130 kph – 10.7%
As of today, the Rakuten Monkeys have Bradin Hagens and Brandon Waddell as their foreign players. The team reportedly are still in talks with Dylan Covey.
Foreign players comes and goes, therefore we compiled a foreign players tracker to keep track of all the foreign players signing for the 2023 CPBL season.
This looks like a good signing for the Monkeys. Waddell is certainly the right age and the right talent level. I expected Waddell to sign with an MLB club to start 2023 at the AAA level, where he pitched well in relief last year before going to the KBO, when the Cardinals did not promote him.
The odds are good that if Waddell pitches well in the first half in Taiwan, he may return to South Korea for the second half.
It is very likely that Brandon Waddell might have an escape clause or buyout clause in his contract. So he can serves as a mid-season fireman to the KBO.