Choo Shin-soo (SSG) caused another stir in the Korean baseball world. So far, there have been many words that have positively stimulated the KBO league, but this time the atmosphere is different. Rather, it faced headwinds.
On the 21st (Korean time), Choo Shin-soo appeared on a Korean radio broadcast in Dallas, Texas, USA, and revealed his beliefs about the formation of the 2023 WBC (World Baseball Classic) team. Here, he said it was regrettable that veterans in their mid-30s such as Kim Gwang-hyun (SSG) and Yang Hyeon-jong (KIA) were included in the national team, and that the league’s best pitcher An Woo-jin (Kiwoom) and top-class prospect Mun Dong-ju (Hanwha) were missing.
“If it were me, I would have looked at the future. If I had looked ahead rather than the results right away, it would be true that many players would not go, and there should have been many new players.” Shin-soo Choo’s argument is that in order for Korean baseball to develop, a generational shift is needed, and the WBC should be used as a stepping stone. Even though it is a statement that makes sense, the reaction of baseball fans is only cold.
‘Yeokrin’ was Ahn Woo-jin. When Ahn Woo-jin was a student at Whimoon High School, he was disciplined by the Korean Sports Association after it was revealed that he had committed school violence. He is now recognized as the best pitcher in the league to win the Golden Glove, but on the other hand, he is still not completely free from criticism as a perpetrator of school violence.
Last year, the situation seemed to be reversed with the announcement of juniors known as victims, but it turned out that one of the victims did not agree with this statement. There was no effect enough to completely change public opinion. 스포츠토토Through the statement of the victim, it was only confirmed that the level of school violence was not as serious as it was known. Rather than taking on the burden of fighting public opinion, the WBC technical committee turned to selecting other pitchers.
However, Choo Shin-soo, as if determined to be eliminated from the national team by An Woo-jin, said, “There is something I want to say to baseball seniors. I was born early and played baseball early, so I am not a senior. If my juniors are going the wrong way or exercising in the wrong place, I should speak up and try to help, but I just watch.”
Here, the thoughts of the fans and Choo Shin-soo were divided. For Choo Shin-soo, Ahn Woo-jin’s fault has already been resolved through (the club’s) discipline, but fans are not accepting it that way.
As a result, Choo Shin-soo did not seem to have anticipated the controversy that would follow when he selected An Woo-jin for the national team. On the other hand, those who do not agree with Choo Shin-soo are concerned that the entire team will be stigmatized if he is selected for the national team while Ahn Woo-jin is still labeled as the perpetrator. It is known that the technical committee also put down the An Woo-jin card for the same reason.
The ‘baseball seniors’ technical committee and Choo Shin-soo thought about the future of Korean baseball in the same way. But the way was different.
On the other hand, ‘Kwang Hyeon-jong’ grew older by one year, but the average age of pitchers in the national team this time is 27.1 years old, not much different from previous years. Among the 15 national team pitchers, 8 are under the age of 25 (Ko Woo-seok, Jeong Cheol-won, Jung Woo-young, Kwak Bin, Kim Yoon-sik, Won Tae-in, Sohn Joon-jun, Lee Eui-ri). It is the first time among the last five international tournaments that pitchers under the age of 25 account for more than half of the pitching staff.