The obvious question raised by Hyun Soo Kim's refusal to accept a demotion to the minor leagues is whether or not the Orioles will just give up and release him rather than try to carry him on the team. At least according to MASN's Roch Kubatko, however, the O's will not send Kim packing. The Orioles are prepared to keep Kim in the fold.
If that's the case, then the situation seems to be settled, though we should all be careful about accepting every report about the whole Kim saga, given that some past reports, such as those from earlier in the week about Kim being willing to take a demotion to the minor leagues, have been proven to be incorrect.
There is the possibility that a person or group of people are out there saying stuff they know isn't true to the media - or, less maliciously, that a person or group of people are saying things that they believe to be true but do not know are not true. This latter explanation is also a possible explanation for the strange twist of the Dexter Fowler pursuit.
Another O's writer, former Sun scribe Dan Connolly, who's now having a go at his independent site Baltimore Baseball, believes that the O's final roster choice will come down to whether to keep Paul Janish or Kim.
Will the fact that Kim is owed $7 million over the next two years weigh into that decision at all? Janish is merely on a minor league contract, and short of J.J. Hardy hitting the disabled list, it's tough to imagine a spot spent on Janish being a worthwhile use of a roster spot.
Assuming we can take the reporting as being true - which is a big assumption at this point - Kubatko adds that Kim has a "substantial offer" waiting for him back in Korea, where he played for ten seasons before attempting to make this leap across the ocean to MLB.
It appears that Kim does not have any interest in taking that offer. This makes his motivation in not wanting to accept the minor league demotion a bit less fuzzy. That sounds like the action of a guy who just really wants to come over here and try to see how he does against the best baseball players in the world. Come back with your shield or on it, as the Spartans supposedly used to say, and he would rather not come back on his shield.
You might think based on his spring training that his stubbornness about not wanting to go to the minors is misguided, and maybe it is. Maybe he doesn't feel like he's got anything to gain from Triple-A. We probably haven't seen the best of Kim here, and Kim himself would know best how to bring out the best of Kim, so who knows?
The story could always change again in the day and a half between now and the Sunday noon deadline to set the Opening Day roster. It wouldn't be the first swerve of the offseason, nor the first swerve of the Kim saga. The O's might decide to release Kim, or Kim might decide he'll accept a demotion after all, or Kim could return to Korea.
For now, Kubatko concludes, the O's and Kim are in "a state of suspended animation," which, unless Dan Duquette has been experimenting with cryogenesis like something out of science fiction, means things are going to stay the way they are now unless something changes.
That's more like Newton's First Law of Motion applied to a baseball roster decision. Kim will be on the team until something happens for him to not be on the team. Well, duh.