National baseball team coach Ryu Joong-il, who led the team to a gold medal at the Hangzhou Asian Games, declared his goal to also win the Asian Professional Baseball Championship (APBC). The person that Coach Ryu Joong-il trusts is the ‘KBO home run king’ Noh Si-hwan (23, Hanwha). He showed anticipation early on by nailing the number 4 hitter.
On the 24th, KBO announced the 26 entries for the APBC baseball team. Of the 24 players who won gold medals at the Asian Games together with Coach Ryu, 17 will also accompany the APBC. Pitchers Jung Woo-young (LG), Park Young-hyun (KT), Won Tae-in (Samsung), Kwak Bin (Doosan), Moon Dong-ju (Hanwha), Choi Ji-min (KIA), Kim Young-gyu (NC), catchers Kim Dong-heon (Kium), Kim Hyeong-jun (NC), infielder Kim Hye-seong (Kiwoom), Moon Bo-kyung (LG), Kim Joo-won (NC), Noh Si-hwan, outfielders Choi Ji-hoon (SSG), Kang Baek-ho (KT), Kim Seong-yoon (Samsung), and Yoon Dong-hee (Lotte) will participate in two tournaments in a row.
Nine players, including pitchers Jeong Hae-young and Lee Ui-ri (KIA), Choi Jun-yong (Lotte), Oh Won-seok (SSG), Choi Seung-yong (Doosan), catcher Son Seong-bin (Lotte), infielders Kim Hwi-jip (Kiwoom) and Kim Do-young (KIA), and outfielder Park Seung-gyu (Sangmu). New players have joined. Excluding Lee Ui-ri, who participated in the 2021 Tokyo Olympics and the World Baseball Classic (WBC) in March this year, eight people are the first adult national team members.
This national team is composed of players aged 24 or younger (born after January 1, 1999) or within the second year of joining (joined after 2021). Up to three players under the age of 29 (born after January 1, 1994) can participate as wild cards, but only one player, Choi Ji-hoon, entered. The trend of generational change continues.
Coach Ryu Joong-il, who attended the joint press conference of the four APBC participating countries held in Tokyo, Japan on this day, also said, “I think the gold medal in the Asian Games has led to a generational change in the national team. This year’s APBC also has about two-thirds of Asian Games members. “I will challenge for the championship with that member,” he said. “I hope that the skills of young players will improve for the Premier 12 next year, the WBC in 2026, and the LA Olympics in 2028.”
In this tournament held at the Tokyo Dome in Japan, Korea is scheduled to play against Australia on the 16th of next month, against Japan on the 17th, and against Taiwan on the 18th. Four teams will play three games each, followed by the finals and third place match on the 19th. In order for Korea to win the championship, it must eventually overcome Japan.
Coach Ryu said, “I have watched and played against Japanese baseball a lot since I was young, and the basics of baseball are very good. In particular, I think these basic skills such as defense, base running, backup play, and base covering are things we should emulate. “I will prepare well for this tournament and do my best to defeat Japan,” he said. Regarding how to target Japanese pitchers, he said, “Japanese pitchers have good ball tip and good ball control. “Rather than playing multiple courses, you have no choice but to focus on one course and attack it.”
The fourth batter nailed Noh Si-hwan in advance. Coach Ryu said, “If you are the team’s fourth hitter, you must play your role well when it is important. Our fourth hitter is Noh Si-hwan. “I think he is a player who has the ability to hit a big hit when given the chance,” he said. “He was the home run king this year, and he is hitting a lot of extra-base hits. He expressed his expectations, saying, “I hope Noh Si-hwan will perform well in this competition as well.”
Noh Si-hwan, now in his 5th year, played in 131 games in the KBO League with a batting average of .298 (153 hits in 514 at-bats), 31 home runs, 101 RBIs, 85 runs, 74 walks, 118 strikeouts, an on-base percentage of .388, a slugging percentage of .541, and an OPS of .929. He ranked first in home runs and RBIs and second in slugging percentage and OPS, showing his potential as one of the few right-handed sluggers in the KBO League. In his team Hanwha, he usually batted at number 3, but he is used to number 4 in the national team.안전놀이터
He started 4 out of 6 games at the Hangzhou Asian Games as the 4th hitter, batting average of .403, 8 ri (7 hits in 16 at-bats), 6 RBI, 8 walks, and an OPS of 1.140. Although he didn’t have his trademark home runs, he hit two doubles and a sacrifice fly to make the decision. In particular, in the Super Round match against Japan, he led Korea to a 2-0 victory with a go-ahead sacrifice fly in the 6th inning and a timely hit in the 8th inning. Attention is being paid to whether Noh Si-hwan’s bat will work in this year’s APBC, where Japanese special talent such as Tatsuya Imai (Seibu), who threw up to 159 km, will participate.