‘WBC alternative selection’ Choi Ji-hoon “I will develop a sense of practice even tomorrow”
‘Good news’ came to Choi Ji-hoon of the SSG Landers, who, despite growing into an outfielder representing the KBO League, suffered a series of highs and lows at the Golden Glove Awards and the selection of the 2023 World Baseball Classic national team.
The Korea Baseball Organization (KBO) announced today (6th), “Pittsburgh Pirates Choi Ji-man has been banned from participating in the WBC due to opposition from his team,” and “Choi Ji-hoon was selected as a substitute.”
Choi Ji-hoon said through the club that day, “I didn’t expect it at all. I still can’t feel it.”
He continued, “From the time I was selected on the 50-person interest list last year, senior Choi Jeong kept telling me, ‘You can go. I didn’t think the words would come true, but I’m happy to be able to go with them, even though it’s late. I won’t be able to play as a starter, but I’ll do my best in my role so that the national team can achieve good results.”
National team coach Lee Kang-cheol (kt) and the technical committee looked at alternative resources in case the Major League Pittsburgh club would oppose the selection of Choi Ji-man, who had a bone fracture in his elbow.
Choi Ji-man is a first baseman, but there was no need to limit the replacement to first baseman.
Director Lee and the technical committee chose Choi Ji-hoon, an outfielder with excellent ball, defense, and land skills.
Choi Ji-hoon played in the regular season (144 games) and the Korean Series (6 games) in the KBO League last year.
His regular season performance was a .304 batting average, 10 home runs, 61 RBI, and 31 stolen bases.
SSG achieved a ‘Wire-to-Wire Championship’ that kept the first place from the opening day to the end of the regular season, and Choi Ji-hoon was classified as ‘first-class contributor’.
SSG raised Choi Ji-hoon’s annual salary by 100% from 150 million won to 300 million won.
However, Choi Ji-hoon failed to win the 2022 KBO Golden Gloves outfielder category by finishing 4th.
Choi Ji-hoon’s win-to-win ratio (WAR) calculated by Sports 2I, the KBO’s official record company, was 5.48, ranking 4th among batters.
The first through third batters were all outfielders.
Lee Jung-hoo (Kiwoom Heroes), who became the best player in the regular season, took 8.53, Jose Pirella (6.89, Samsung Lions), and Na Seong-beom (6.74, KIA Tigers) ranked second and third.
The outfield Golden Glove winners were Lee Jung-hoo, Pirella, and Na Seong-beom.
Choi Ji-hoon’s name was not even on the 2023 WBC national team outfield list announced on January 4th.
In addition to Lee Jung-hoo and Na Seong-beom, Kim Hyeon-soo and Park Hae-min (LG Twins), who have extensive experience in international competitions, and Park Geon-woo (NC Dinos), a right-handed outfielder who considers the left-right balance of the batting line, are lined up.
Choi Ji-hoon calmly accepted the result, saying, “I am still lacking,” and left for Vero Beach, Florida, USA, where SSG had a spring camp.
However, when Choi Ji-man’s boarding failed, the Korean baseball team selected Choi Ji-hoon as a substitute.
Choi Ji-hoon, who had been selected for the under-23 national team in 2018 while attending Dongguk University, but had never participated in an international competition dominated by professional players, got a chance to play in the WBC, where a large number of big leaguers dramatically compete. 바카라
Looking at the results of 2022, Choi Ji-hoon is not only a major runner and major defense, but also a ‘starting outfielder’.
Choi Ji-hoon, who shed tears before graduating from Gwangju Jeil High School because he was not nominated for a pro, went on to Dongguk University and achieved great success.
Choi Ji-hoon’s OPS (on-base percentage + slugging percentage), who joined SK Wyverns (predecessor of SSG) in the 2nd, 3rd round, 30th overall in 2020, rose every year to 0.644 in 2020, 0.704 in 2021, and 0.789 in 2022.
Choi Ji-hoon, who took off the tag of a promising player, now wears the ‘Taegeuk mark’ that he desperately wanted.
Choi Ji-hoon said, “I contacted my parents first after hearing the news of being selected for the national team. I am grateful to my parents.” Thank you too.”
I am well aware of the weight of the Taegeuk mark.
Choi Ji-hoon said, “I built my body well during the off-season. Starting tomorrow, I will gradually increase my pace and prepare for the game schedule.” I will do my best to focus on winning.”