SEOUL, Oct. 18 (Yonhap) — Former big leaguers and potential future major league players will represent South Korea in exhibition games against Major League Baseball (MLB) stars next month.
The Korea Baseball Organization (KBO) on Tuesday announced rosters for two separate teams that will face the MLB squad during the “MLB World Tour: Korea Series.”
On Nov. 11 and 12 at Sajik Baseball Stadium in the southeastern city of Busan, “Team KBO,” made up of players from three teams in the region — Lotte Giants, Samsung Lions and NC Dinos — will take on the MLB side.
Then on Nov. 14 and 15 at Gocheok Sky Dome in Seoul, it will be “Team Korea,” with players selected from all 10 KBO teams, against MLB.
Team KBO will feature Lee Dae-ho, who ended an illustrious 22-year professional career as a member of the Giants earlier this month. The one-time Seattle Mariner was coaxed out of retirement to make one final appearance before Sajik faithful in his hometown.
Lee will be joined by another former major leaguer in Oh Seung-hwan, the Lions closer who previously pitched for the St. Louis Cardinals, Toronto Blue Jays and Colorado Rockies.
Others on the 29-man Team KBO include: Dinos ace Koo Chang-mo, his batterymate and perennial MVP candidate Yang Eui-ji, Giants third baseman Han Dong-hui and Lions first baseman Oh Jae-il.
Team Korea was built with the 2023 World Baseball Classic (WBC) in mind, as the national team manager Lee Kang-chul, currently KT Wiz skipper, will also be in charge of the November exhibitions. Most on Team Korea will be considered for the WBC.
Team Korea features three ex-big leaguers among its 28 players with SSG Landers pitcher Kim Kwang-hyun (St. Louis Cardinals), Kia Tigers pitcher Yang Hyeon-jong (Texas Rangers) and LG Twins outfielder Kim Hyeon-soo (Baltimore Orioles and Philadelphia Phillies). Kiwoom Heroes outfielder Lee Jung-hoo, the MVP front runner this year who has been drawing attention from big league clubs, also made the team.
Hanwha Eagles rookie Moon Dong-ju, a former first overall pick, is the youngest member of the team at 18.
MLB has only unveiled six players so far, including the one-time Heroes All-Star and current San Diego Padres shortstop Kim Ha-seong.