Mets, Giants, A's, other clubs eye top Korean shortstop Jung-Ho Kang

Jung-Ho Kang hit 39 home runs with a .364/.457/.733 slash line in Korea last season. (Getty Images)
Jung-Ho Kang hit 39 home runs with a .364/.457/.733 slash line in Korea last season. (Getty Images)

SAN DIEGO -- Power-hitting Korean shortstop Jung-Ho Kang is drawing interest, no surprise considering the thin shortstop market, and the Mets, Athletics and Giants are among teams interested.

While some may view the slugging Kang as more of a second baseman, he has been the top shortstop in Korea and some major-league teams clearly think he can make the transition. The Mets' entry is interesting because they have struggled to find a shortstop, and are planning to give Wilmer Flores a shot should they not come out of this offseason with an upgrade.

Kang has consistently put up huge numbers in Korea and posted an amazing .364/.457/.733 slash line in 2014 for the Nexen Heores, hitting 39 home runs in 116 games. The big question is how those numbers translate, which is why he could be viewed as a bargain by some.

The A's are looking for a shortstop while the Giants need an infielder after the loss of Pablo Sandoval to the Red Sox. They could take Kang to replace Sandoval, or potentially insert him at second base and move Joe Panik to third.

The Mets had interest in trading for Starlin Castro and Jimmy Rollins, among others, but Castro is unavailable and word is Rollins will only waive his no-trade clause for a few teams, and the Mets aren't one of those teams. White Sox SS Alexei Ramirez is out there, but landing him probably would require the Mets to surrender one of their best young pitchers, something they are reluctant to do.

The plan is for Kang to be posted next week, as Ken Rosenthal of FoxSports.com reported.

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