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Former SF Giants pitcher Shaun Anderson nearing deal with Kia Tigers

Former SF Giants pitcher Shaun Anderson, who was traded for LaMonte Wade Jr, is reportedly nearing a deal with the KBO’s Kia Tigers.

Former SF Giants right-handed pitcher Shaun Anderson is a top target of the Kia Tigers of the Korea Baseball Organization (KBO), according to a report by Ji-heon Bae of Sports Chunchu. Per the report, Anderson and Kia are currently engaged in negotiations for a contract that would pay the righty $1 million, the maximum contract for a foreign player in the KBO.

Toronto Blue Jays pitcher Shaun Anderson throws a pitch during a game against the Boston Red Sox. (2022)

Former SF Giants pitcher Shaun Anderson appeared in one MLB game with the Blue Jays this season.

Drafted in the third round of the 2016 MLB Draft by the Red Sox, Anderson was acquired by the Giants along with Gregory Santos in a trade that sent infielder Eduardo Núñez to Boston at the 2017 trade deadline. Anderson quickly found his footing in the Giants farm system and eventually became one of the best pitching prospects in the organization.

After reaching Triple-A at the end of 2018, Anderson received his first big-league call up in 2019 after eight starts at the highest level of the minors, where he recorded 41 strikeouts against 13 walks in 38.1 innings pitched with a 3.76 ERA.

Anderson immediately slotted into the Giants rotation, but struggled to work deep into games. Anderson struggled through 16 starts before the Giants shifted him to the bullpen to finish the season. Anderson showed some impressive flashes in relief, but continued struggling with consistency. He finished his rookie season with a 5.44 ERA in 96 innings.

In the pandemic-shortened 2020 season, Anderson permanently shifted to the bullpen and appeared in 18 games with the Giants. He posted a much improved 3.52 ERA in 15.1 innings pitched with 18 strikeouts, but he issued an alarming 12 walks. Following the season, the Giants traded Anderson to the Minnesota Twins for corner bat LaMonte Wade Jr.

While Wade thrived in his first season with the Giants, Anderson immediately regressed with the Twins and was designated for assignment after just four appearances. Over the course of 2021, Anderson would be claimed off waivers and designated for assignment several times. In the end, he recorded a 8.49 ERA in 23.1 innings combined from stints with the Twins, Orioles, and Padres.

Anderson was still very effective at Triple-A, and another offseason transaction brought him to the Toronto Blue Jays in 2022. He made just one appearance in the majors this season, allowing two runs in one inning. However, he returned to more prolonged outings at Triple-A and had a promising 3.58 ERA in 88 innings pitched (36 appearances and 15 starts).

Several players, particularly pitchers, who struggled to find their footing in the majors have had success going to the KBO and later returning to MLB. It seems that Shaun Anderson is looking to follow that path as he negotiates a contract with the Kia Tigers.