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Korean Professional Baseball Player Organization ``PS Complete Rejection``

Korean Professional Baseball Player Organization ``PS Complete Rejection``

Posted October. 05, 2001 08:21,   


The Korean Pro-Baseball Player Organization (PBPO) announced a boycott of the 2001 pro-baseball post-season which opens on October 7.

The PBPO held a representative meeting on the 4th at the Seoul Holiday Inn hotel which was attended by 5 representatives from each team. 43 representatives out of the total 47 voted yes and approved the total rejection of the post-season.

Lee Ho-Sung, president of the PBPO stated, ``the Korea Baseball Organization (KBO) agreed to decrease three starting international players to two but overturned the decision and did not carry out the points agreed at the Ministry of Culture and Tourism. We can no longer stay silent about KBO`s repeated violations of the agreement and the players will boycott the post-season until our demands have been fulfilled.``

PBPO is demanding that the foreign player regulations `three players retain, two players starting` be changed to `two retain, two starting` by next year. The organization submitted the request on July 16th at the PBPO meeting held in Taejeon, Yu-sung. At the KBO trustees meeting held in September, however, ignored the organization`s request and decided to keep the existing regulation.

The PBPO argued that the number of foreign players should be reduced because this does not increase the number of fans, waste foreign currency, and foster a sense of separation from national players. A particularly problematic consequence of this is the cost to amateur baseball. The increase in hiring foreign players have destroyed the base of amateur baseball and created a situation where 80 out of 120 elementary school teams have less than 15 players and 28 teams with less than 10 players are on the brink of being dismantled.

PBPO visited KBO and delivered its request but the teams and the KBO are showing signs of taking a strong stance. This may lead to the cancellation of the post-season, the first time in twenty years of pro-baseball.

The head of the KBO trustees, Lee Sang-Kook strongly stated, ``I think the players have lost their sense of professionalism. The organization cannot beg for a game and the trustees will never negotiate.`` Kang Kun-Koo, president of the Doosan team, stated ``Early this year during the talks at the Ministry of Culture and Tourism, then president Song Jin-Woo promised that the PBPO will restrain from taking collective action until we can draw 6, 000, 000 fans.

For the time being, the PBPO announced that the players will return to their teams and continue training until the their demands are met.

Kim Sang-Soo ssoo@donga.com