In November 2017, Korean, Japanese, and Taiwanese professional baseball prospects gathered together. At the Tokyo Dome in Japan, players under the age of 24 or under 3 years of professional experience gathered to determine the best player in Asia, and Korea ranked second. In the first match against Korea and Japan, they lost in a close match, and in the next match against Taiwan, they won, but were unable to cross the wall against Japan, whom they met again in the final.

The result of the competition six years ago is not important. What matters is the present. Among the promising players who stood on the Tokyo Dome ground with the Taegeuk mark six years ago, there are not many cases where they have grown smoothly and worn the Taegeuk mark. Of the 25 players named on the 2017 APBC roster, only four players made it to the 2023 World Baseball Classic (WBC) national team.

Park Se-woong and Koo Chang-mo from the pitching staff, and Kim Ha-seong and Lee Jung-hoo from the fielding team were included in the WBC national team this time. There are two pitchers and two fielders, but as for the fielders, more than 10 of the 13 players who participated in the 2017 APBC played in the first team until last year or plan to play in the first team this year. In addition to Kim Ha-seong, who has advanced to the major leagues, and Lee Jung-hoo, a prospective major leaguer, Park Min-woo and Koo Ja-wook are key players on their team. Choi Won-joon and Kim Seong-wook are highly anticipated outfielders after being discharged from the military. Although he made several mistakes, Ha Joo-seok played as the starting shortstop, and Ryu Ji-hyeok is constantly playing in the first team.

The problem is the pitcher. Jang Hyeon-sik, who played an active role in the match against Japan as a starting pitcher, and Jang Pil-joon, who played an active role as a relief pitcher, did not grow as much as expected at the time. Jang Hyeon-shik took the hold king after the trade and succeeded in changing positions, but Jang Pil-joon has been stuck in a long tunnel for 3 years.

Ham Deok-joo and Lim Ki-young, who faced each other in the 2017 Korean Series, are also like that. Ham Deok-joo has not been able to properly play the season due to injury for the past two years. For Lim Ki-young, who played well in the match against Taiwan, the 2017 season is actually becoming a career high season. At that time and even now, only Park Se-woong and Koo Chang-mo rose to the top as local aces while the phenomenon of shortage of local selection continued.

It was the 2017 APBC national team that was formed with the expectation of a bright future, but six years later, looking back at the players, there is a strong sense of regret. Kim Yoon-dong, who played an active role as Pil Seung-jo, left the ground due to an injury.

Nurturing young talent is an eternal task. New faces must continuously emerge for the league to be healthy and baseball to develop. Korean baseball will be put to the test once again through the 2nd APBC, which will be held in November.

It’s not without hope. Looking at the 2023 WBC entry, which consisted of Choi Jeong-ye, 8 out of 30 (Jung Woo-young, So-jun Joon, Tae-in Won, Bin Kwak, Cheol-won Jeong, Yun-sik Kim, Eui-ri Lee, Baek-ho Kang) were under the age of 24. Lee Jeong-hoo, Kim Hye-seong, and Ko Woo-seok, who will be 25 years old, cannot participate in APBC, but even if they exclude these three, they can make a stronger mound than 2017 APBC.

In addition, Lotte Choi Jun-yong and Lee Min-seok, Hanwha Moon Dong-ju and Kim Seo-hyun, and NC Shin Young-woo, who throw fastballs exceeding 150 km per hour, can wear the Taegeuk mark at APBC depending on the results of the upcoming season. In terms of pitchers, young guns with more talent than ever are transfused into the KBO league.

So you need a system. Young players should go up step by step, not debuting on the international stage at the highest level like the WBC. Organizing a competition like APBC every year or every other year can naturally create the present and the future. If the national team, which is centered on the under-24 years old, is formed steadily, competition among young players will develop and develop rapidly.

If you miss this period when the best talent gathers on the ground,스포츠토토 the only thing left is a dark future. Even if you just turn your gaze to middle school right now. Middle school leaders who were in happy trouble three or four years ago because there were so many baseball players are running around looking for players. If you lose the present, there is no future.

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