“I’m glad you know my name, I never thought a baseball stadium could be so nice…”
For the first time, high school and college players played in a professional baseball stadium. The 2023 1st Hanwha Eagles Baseball High School-College All-Star Game was held on the 6th. Players and even managers wore their school’s jerseys on the field and fought for the pride of high school baseball and college baseball, but the tournament ended in a draw.
But the event itself was more important than the result. While high school and college players have received attention from fans through baseball-themed entertainment programmes and baseball-related media, this was the first time they were able to showcase their skills in an official game. The players also seemed to have learnt a lot from the tournament while making a name for themselves.
Jeon Damin (Gangneung Youngdong University), who was awarded the MVP, performed well in the game, including hitting a three-run homerun, and stood out to the scouts on hand. After the All-Star Game, he met with the players and coaching staff.토토사이트
“I saw a lot of players I liked”
Lee Young-bok of Chungam High School came to Daejeon Baseball Stadium to coach the high school players in the All-Star Game.
“Compared to college players, high school players are smaller, but both teams gave us a good game,” he said. “We had to use all of our pitchers, so I thought, ‘If we had used one player longer, we would have won,'” he said.
However, “we couldn’t get over the hump at the end, so we went to extra innings and tied it up. Rather, it was more meaningful because there was no ‘win’ or ‘loss’ in today’s game,” but he laughed, saying, “I think it’s a sign for next year’s game.”
Lee was also seen picking his team for the U-18 Baseball World Championship in Taiwan in September. “In my mind, I have my eye on some of them,” he said. Of course, I have to make a decision through the weekend league, the Qinglong Games and the national tournament,” he said, “but it was good to see a lot of players I like through today’s game.”
“My first experience in a professional baseball stadium… I loved it”
The most notable player to emerge from the tournament was MVP Jeon Damin. The former Seorak High School and Gangneung Youngdong University student put on a performance worthy of an MVP, leading off the game with a triple, scoring a run and stealing two bases.
“It was an honour to play against high school players in the All-Star Game, alongside good players from many teams,” said Jeon, “and I was happy to be a part of it for the first time.”
“I think I hit a triple in the back of the order and got on base, but it was unfortunate that I struck out in the front of the order,” he said. “So when my name was called as MVP, I thought, ‘Should I take it?
For Jeon, the All-Star Game was the first time he stepped onto a professional baseball field. “It’s good to have my name known this time,” he said, “and I learned that I like professional baseball stadiums,” he laughed. “I really want to win the remaining national championships,” he said.
“I want to be as good as my dad.”
Lee Seung-min of Hwimun High School, son of Samsung’s head coach Lee Byung-kyu “Red Tomah” Lee, also visited the Daejeon Hanwha Life Eagle Spark on the same day. Lee showed his father’s skills with his bat, going 2-for-3 and earning the honourable mention.
“I’m grateful to the Hanwha Eagles for giving me this opportunity. “When I first came to the baseball stadium, I was surprised by the size of the stadium and the atmosphere,” he said, adding, “I hope this tournament is held every year so that the juniors can have a good experience.
The player also expressed his admiration for Coach Lee Byung-kyu, saying, “It was great to see my dad play for 20 years in a ballpark with such a great atmosphere.”
“If I go to the pros, I want to show good skills like my dad,” he said, adding, “I want to help Whimun High School do well at the national tournament for the rest of this year and win the beauty of the Yuzong.”