Addison Russell is officially playing baseball again, however, it won’t be in the MLB.
This move isn’t a complete surprise, but Russell could likely use the change of scenery. Although the KBO ball is more of a “dead ball” than the new MLB ball, Russell has an opportunity to be one of the better players over in the KBO. Also, with the KBO playing baseball already, Russell has an opportunity to try out for MLB teams for the 2021 season.
If Russell can go to South Korea and show he can still play while staying out of the trouble that resulted in a 40-game suspension in 2019, then there is a good chance he’ll get a second chance somewhere in the MLB as an everyday shortstop.
One example is Eric Thames. Although Thames played in the KBO when the ball was juiced, he was able to become a superstar in the KBO and make his way back to the MLB with a nice contract. Russell doesn’t have the same pop that Thames does, but he could show that he’s still good enough to compete in the majors.
Time will tell, but for now, a familiar face to Cubs fans is playing in the KBO and can be viewed on television, if you care to watch the former Cub that is.