The 24-man roster for the Korean baseball team at the Hangzhou Asian Games in October has been finalized. Included is Koo Chang-mo (NC Dinos), who is rehabbing from an injury.
The Korea Baseball Organization (KBO) and the Korea Baseball Softball Association (KBSA) today announced the final 24-man roster for the Hangzhou Asian Games. The squad was selected based on a maximum of three players per team, with 21 players aged 25 or younger or in their fourth year of eligibility and three wildcards aged 29 or younger.
South Korean baseball has won three consecutive gold medals in Guangzhou 2010, Incheon 2014, and Jakarta-Palembang 2018, but the selection process has been fraught with controversy and players have been selected more cautiously than in the past because of the military service benefits at stake. Cho Gye-hyun, 59, head of the KBO’s Power Enhancement Committee, said, “The most important theme of the team selection was fairness and transparency. We had long meetings every week for three months and tried to put together the best possible team.”
In particular, as the KBO decided not to suspend the league during the Asian Games, it was decided to select no more than three players so that no team would be harmed.
In terms of player numbers, LG, Kiwoom, and NC had the most players with three each.
LG chose pitcher Go Woo-seok and infielder Moon Bo-kyung, Kiwoom chose Lee Jung-hoo, Kim Hye-sung, and Kim Dong-heon, and NC chose pitcher Koo Chang-mo, catcher Kim Hyung-joon, and infielder Kim Joo-won.
On paper, LG looks to have the bigger batting order, but Kiwoom is missing three center fielders who should be playing every day. NC doesn’t really lose much power, as Kim Hyung-joon is still on the disabled list and Koo Chang-mo is out with an injury. Rather, Lotte, which lost two starters (Park Se-woong and Na Gyun-an), and SSG, which lost two centerfielders (Park Seong-seong and Choi Ji-hoon), may have a bigger power vacuum.
KIA is missing two left-handed pitchers in Lee Yi-ri and Choi Ji-min, while Samsung (Won Tae-in, Kim Ji-chan), Hanwha (Noh Si-hwan, Moon Dong-joo) and KT (Kang Baek-ho, Kim Young-hyun) are also missing two starters. Doosan had only starter Kwak Bin selected.
Meanwhile, Jang Hyun-seok (Yongmago), the All-Amateur pitcher of the year, became the first high school player to be selected for the Asian Games baseball team.
Prior to the press conference, Liu Zhong-il, head coach of the Hangzhou Asian Games team, apologized for the drinking controversy during the WBC.
“This Asian Games is a chance to change generations. I think it is a starting point to lay the foundation for a good performance at the WBC in 2026,” he said, adding, “We have a young team, but we will definitely win gold 먹튀검증.”
“It is an honor to be on the national team. It is also a responsibility. I will tell our athletes how to behave when they compete in the Asian Games with the Korean flag on their chest.” He also emphasized dignity.