The opportunity to wear the Taegeuk mark for the first time in the pro debut has arrived for the young Fiddle of the Lions.
In November next year, KBO (President Heo Gu-yeon) will participate in the Asian Professional Baseball Championship (APBC) 2023, a tournament consisting of young generations under the age of 24 from four Asian countries, including Korea, Japan, Taiwan, and Australia, to determine the best team in Asian professional baseball. do.
APBC was established with the purpose of giving young players from each country the opportunity to participate in national competitions and pride as a national representative, and discovering promising players and star players who will play an active part in international competitions such as the WBC in the future, and the first competition was held in 2017. .
At the time, the KBO dispatched promising players such as Kim Ha-seong, who is currently active in MLB San Diego, Kiwoom Lee Jung-hoo, who has now become a representative player of the league, NC Koo Chang-mo, and Samsung Koo Ja-wook.
This tournament will consist of a total of 26 players, including players under the age of 24 (those born on or after January 1, 1999) or players under the 3rd year of professional service, and 3 wild card players.
Attention is drawn to whether infielders Kim Ji-chan (21), Lee Jae-hyeon (19), and outfielder Kim Hyun-jun (20), who have established themselves as Samsung’s main members this season, will be on board. All of them meet the eligibility criteria to participate in the national team as players under the age of 24.
Kim Ji-chan, a member of the youth national team, has established himself as a starting second baseman while playing in the first team from the first year of his debut in 2020. In the meantime, he showed weakness in throwing, but under the intensive guidance of his grandson, the defensive coach, he improved remarkably.
Despite being out of power for nearly a month due to a hamstring injury, he hit his first triple-digit hit in his debut and his batting average was 2.88, the highest since his debut. His runs scored (62), stolen bases (25), and on-base percentage (0.361) all set his personal season highs.
Lee Jae-hyun, who was first nominated on the pro stage this season, Lee Jae-hyun played all positions in the infield except for first baseman. His batting average was only 2.3 5 Lee (54 hits in 230 at-bats), but he hit the most home runs among rookie hitters from the 10 clubs he joined this year. He was also named the club’s all-time 2nd in home runs by first-year high school graduates, following Lee Seung-yeop (13) in 1995.
In his second year, Kim Hyun-joon brilliantly filled the void left by Park Hae-min (LG) as a free agent. He appeared in 118 games and was named Rookie of the Year with a batting average of .
Kim Hyun-jun recorded 21 consecutive hits from the game against LG on June 16th to the game against SSG on July 10th. He set a new record for consecutive hits by players under the age of 19 in KBO League history. It surpassed Lee Seung-yeop’s previous 19 games (July 7-August 6, 1996) and rose to first place.
Samsung catcher Kang Min-ho (37), who has enough experience on the international stage to be called a regular customer of the national team, said, “I was proud as a veteran player watching young players take their place in the first team. “he said. 안전놀이터
He also added, “I was convinced that he was a player who could become a big player when I saw him unshakable under any circumstances. If I was their age, I would not have been able to do that.” As both his skills and mentality are outstanding, he is expected to show his skills properly on the international stage.
Meanwhile, the second APBC 2023 will be held at the Tokyo Dome in Japan from November 16 to 19 next year. Previously, there were three participating countries, Korea, Japan, and Taiwan, but Australia has been confirmed to participate for the first time in this competition, and a total of four countries will participate. Each team will go through a full league of 3 preliminary games, and the 1st and 2nd place teams will compete in the final, and the 3rd and 4th place teams will play the 3rd place match.