Pittsburgh Pirates manager Clint Hurdle answers questions during a pre-game news conference before the NL Wild Card Playoff baseball game against the San Francisco Giants on Wednesday, Oct. 1, 2014, in Pittsburgh. (AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar)
Gene J. Puskar
December 22, 2014

PITTSBURGH (AP) The Pirates have won the rights to negotiate with South Korean shortstop Jung-Ho Kang.

Pittsburgh has a 30-day window to sign the 27-year-old, who hit .354 with 39 homers last season for the Nexen Heroes while being named the MVP of the Korean Baseball Organization. If the Pirates reach an agreement with Kang, the Nexen Heroes would receive the posting fee for Kang's rights, reported to be $5,002,015 by Yonhap News Agency.

If the two sides don't come to terms, Kang's rights would remain with the Heroes.

The Pirates are searching for depth in the middle infield behind second baseman Neil Walker and shortstop Jordy Mercer.

Major League Baseball announced Monday that Pittsburgh submitted the high bid.

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