“Kim Ha-seong joined from Gocheok training on March 2nd… he asked Edmon to join during the same period”
In the debate over Choo Shin-soo’s comments, “I think it’s a personal opinion”
It has become difficult to see the big leagues participating in the World Baseball Classic 2023 (WBC) wearing the Taegeuk mark and matching their hands and feet with domestic players in training in Arizona, USA.
Ha-seong Kim (28, San Diego Padres) and Tommy Hyun-soo Edman (28, St. Louis Cardinals) will have their first training with the Korean national baseball team on March 2 at the Gocheok Sky Dome in Guro-gu, Seoul.
It is expected to decide whether Choi Ji-man (32, Pittsburgh Pirates) will join the baseball team soon.
Lee Kang-cheol (57), kt wiz coach who leads the Korean baseball team in this WBC, met with reporters at Incheon International Airport on the 27th and said, “Kim Ha-seong is expected to join Gocheok’s training.
I told Edmund, ‘Come to Gocheok training,'” he said. “We have to wait and see if Choi Ji-man joins.”
On this day, coach Lee left for Kino Sports Complex in Tucson, Arizona, USA, where kt and the Korean baseball team will train.
kt will open spring camp from February 1st.
Coach Lee Kang-cheol will lead the team’s training for two weeks, and lead the national team’s training from February 14th.
However, not all 30 members of the Korean national team can gather in Arizona training.
The WBC is a tournament organized by the US Major League Baseball.
This is why a large number of major leagues compete in the WBC.
However, it is not possible to call major leaguers ‘valuable bodies’ early on.
The US WBC national team, which is made up of all major leaguers, will also begin training in Arizona from March 6th.
The major leagues that were selected to represent Korea are also expected to join the national team training in March.
The Korean WBC team will return to Korea on March 1st after training in Tucson and will have jet lag adjustment and recovery training held at the Gocheok Sky Dome in Seoul on March 2nd and 3rd.
At this time, he will play an evaluation game against the second team in the KBO League.
On March 4, they move to Osaka, Japan, and on March 6-7, they will have mock finals against the Orix Buffaloes and the Hanshin Tigers of the Japanese professional baseball leagues.
The match against Orix and Hanshin is an ‘official match’ recognized by the WBC Secretariat.
Manager Lee Kang-cheol said, “I have to check more, but I know that the major leagues cannot play in the ‘own practice game’ held by the KBO.”
Even if Kim Ha-seong and Edman join the Gocheok Dome training, it means that the evaluation game can only be played after moving to Japan.
In the end, the Korean baseball team’s first ‘Big League Keystone Combi’ has to go to the Book Council after only two actual tests.
Choi Ji-man’s situation is more complicated.
First baseman Choi Ji-man, who was traded to Pittsburgh after the end of the 2022 season, returned to Korea and underwent surgery to remove a piece of bone in his right elbow on November 23.
If the Pittsburgh club does not allow him to participate, Choi Ji-man will not be allowed to join the Korean national team.
Salary negotiations that have not been reached must also be resolved.
Choi Ji-man asked for 5.4 million dollars in annual salary this year, while the Pittsburgh club faced 4.65 million dollars, and could not find a contact point.
Director Lee Kang-cheol said, “It’s better for Choi Ji-man to join.
However, we must be prepared if we cannot come,” he said, “but we decided not to allow reserve players to join the training of the national team.”
The Korean national football team selected Oh Hyun-gyu (Samsung) as a “stand-by” to accompany him to Qatar in case of the absence of Son Heung-min (Tottenham), who suffered a facial injury in the Qatar World Cup last year, can play.
However, coach Lee said, “We are in a different situation,” and decided not to select a reserve player until Choi Ji-man failed to join.
Director Lee added, “If Choi Ji-man’s signing fails, we may choose a player in a position other than first baseman.”
Director Lee Kang-cheol was also asked about Choo Shin-soo’s (41, SSG Landers) recent controversial comments.
This director didn’t seem to care much.
“I believe this was my personal opinion for the development of Korean baseball,” he avoided direct comment.
Choo Shin-soo recently appeared on a Korean radio show in the Dallas area and criticized the composition of the WBC team, but faced backlash.
He said he had to give a chance to young pitchers, including Ahn Woo-jin, who had a history of violence at school.
Meanwhile, Korea, which belongs to WBC Group B, faces Australia on March 9, Japan on March 10, the Czech Republic on March 12, and China on March 13 at the Tokyo Dome in Japan.
If they finish 1st or 2nd in Group B, they will advance to the quarter-finals, and on March 15th, they will play a single match against the 1st or 2nd in Group A (Taiwan, Cuba, Panama, Italy, Netherlands) at the Tokyo Dome.
If they win in the quarter-finals, they will move to Miami, USA for the semi-finals.
Coach Lee Kang-cheol said, “Our goal is to advance to the semifinals by passing the preliminary round and the semifinals.”
So, in our first match against Australia, we intend to fight all the way.”
“Cuba has become stronger with the addition of premier leaguers, and the Netherlands and Taiwan are also good teams.
I don’t know who I will face in the quarter-finals.
It’s not easy no matter who you stick with,” he carefully pictured the semi-finals in his head.
Coach Lee said, “Even when I’m sleeping, I think about the timing of the WBC pitcher’s reset.
Now I really feel like I’m seriously starting to prepare for WBC,” he said. “I chose a good player.
I want to continue the World Cup fever in Qatar by doing my best.
I will show my best and feel a great sense of responsibility.
Please give us lots of support.”