Twenty-four baseball “Taeguk Warriors” have been selected to compete at the Hangzhou Asian Games in September. It is the second youngest baseball team in history.
The Korea Baseball Organization (KBO) and the Korea Baseball Softball Association (KBSA) announced the 24 players who will compete at the Hangzhou Asian Games on Monday at the Dogok-dong Baseball Hall in Seoul.
The roster was assembled in a slightly different atmosphere than in the past, when top-level players from home and abroad played. The idea is to avoid the controversy that has always surrounded the selection of Asian Games teams due to “military service benefits”. Therefore, the selection guidelines were initially set at 21 players aged 25 or younger or in their fourth year of professional baseball, with three ’29 and under’ wildcards.
As the KBO league will not be suspended during the tournament, each club will be able to select a maximum of three players, making it even more important for clubs to align their rosters. “Fairness and transparency are the most important themes of this team selection,” said Cho Gye-hyun, head of the KBO’s Power Enhancement Committee.
The average age of the squad is 23.21 years old, a significant decrease from the previous edition (27.13 years old). It is the second-youngest Asian Games team in history after the 1998 Bangkok Games (22.33). Pitcher Jang Hyun-seok (Masan Yongmago) and catcher Kim Dong-heon (Kiwoom) are the other two teenagers. Nineteen players are young enough to be exempted from military service if they win gold. 메이저사이트
“I think this is a tournament that will mark a generational change in Korean baseball,” said Ryu Jung-il, the national team manager. “The goal is to win a gold medal,” Ryu said. We will work together with the younger players to achieve a good result.” The Korean baseball team will be trying to win its fourth consecutive gold medal, following Guangzhou 2010, Incheon 2014 and Jakarta-Palembang 2018.
The three wild-card spots are filled by left-hander Koo Chang-mo (NC), right-hander Park Se-woong (Lotte), and outfielder Choi Won-joon (Sangsung). There are also a number of pitchers with national team experience, including Kwak Bin (Doosan), Ko Woo-seok (LG), and Lee Yi-ri (KIA). The outfield is relatively thin with only three players, Choi Won-jun, Choi Ji-hoon (SSG), and Lee Jung-hoo (Kiwoom), but infielders Kang Baek-ho (KT) and Kim Ji-chan (Samsung) can play outfield defense. Their Achilles’ heel is the lack of an experienced catcher at the position. This led to speculation that the team would use one of its wild cards to bolster its catching options, but the team chose Kim Hyung-jun (NC) as its starter.
LG, Kiwoom, and NC each had a maximum of three players selected. Doosan had only Kwak Bin on board. Hanwha, which was embarrassed in March when no one was named to the World Baseball Classic (WBC) squad, will be represented by Moon Dong-joo and Noh Si-hwan. The team will convene in September for domestic training before traveling to Hangzhou to prepare for the tournament, which begins on October 1.