“I’ll come back when I have strength.” Ko Woo-suk dreams of returning to LG like a Japanese baseball romantic legend

“Even if I come back, I’m still an LG player.” One of Go Woo-seok’s unexpected reasons for applying for the post was to return to his original team. While the process of a KBO player reaching the major leagues through a posting is a kind of free agent negotiation, Go Woo-seok’s relationship with LG is clearly tied to the team and the player.굿모닝토토

Just as Kuroda stayed loyal to the Hiroshima Carp and led the team to the top of the standings, so too does Gowseok want to come back and protect the last of LG.

On February 2, he participated in the “2023 LG Love Giving Festival with Championship” event at Kyung Hee University’s Peace Hall in Dongdaemun-gu, Seoul, and greeted fans. While the event was a celebration of LG’s first combined regular season and Korean Series title in 29 years, it was also a chance for him to say goodbye to LG fans for the last time. He was preparing for this post.

When he met with the press, he spoke candidly about why he chose to write the post and how he feels about making it to the major leagues.

“When I was negotiating my salary this year, I talked to the general manager. He told me that if I won the Korean Series in the regular season, he would consider my application for a post, even if I didn’t necessarily go overseas.” “But I don’t think applying now will make a big difference. First of all, my age is the biggest issue. Even if it doesn’t work out, I can still be an LG player, so those things were important.” “I can challenge as a free agent next year, and I can also go for a post this time, so I think it’s best to go with the flow (of things),” he explained.

He did not emphasize “unconditional posting right now” as his agent, Lee Yerang of Ricoh Sports, said. He seemed to be more interested in being an LG player after his return than in challenging the major leagues.

If he does make it to the major leagues, Go Woo-seok revealed an unexpected goal: “I want to come back without English. “I remember one of the players who went to the major leagues from Japan saying, ‘I want to come back and show you when I have the strength,'” he said.

Although he cautions, “I haven’t made it to the major leagues yet, and I’m not at that level, so it’s probably too early for me to say that,” he clearly sees Kuroda as an “example” of what he hopes to achieve.

Kuroda, who made his professional baseball debut in Hiroshima, was a top-notch starter for seven seasons with the Los Angeles Dodgers and New York Yankees between 2008 and 2014. In 2015, at the age of 40, he turned down an offer from a major league club and returned to Hiroshima.

“I’m going back to Japan while I still have the strength. To Hiroshima, of course.” He kept his promise. Many were impressed by Kuroda’s decision to prioritize his relationship with Hiroshima, a club with a strong “poor club” image, over financial gain.

With Kuroda’s return, Hiroshima became a national favorite. The Kuroda effect was so strong that even away games were sold out. The team’s performance soared. In 2015, Kuroda’s first year back, the team finished fourth, half a game out of first place, but in 2016, the team finished a whopping 17.5 games ahead of the second-place Yomiuri Giants to top the Central League. It was Kuroda’s final season as an active player. Although Hiroshima failed to win the Japan Series, they remained a powerhouse in the “post-Kuroda era,” finishing atop the league for three consecutive years from 2016 to 2018.

Koo took Kuroda’s decision to heart as he prepared to enter the major leagues. Koo has 30 days to negotiate with Major League Baseball teams, from 10 p.m. KST on Dec. 5 to 7 a.m. KST on Jan. 4 of next year.

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