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Choi, Hui-Sub Is Facing the Test for A Big Leaguer

Posted September. 02, 2002 22:31,   


The Milwaukee Brewers game in the Wrigley Field in Chicago, which will be held at 9:05 (Korean local time) on the 4th.

The debut date for Choi, Hui-Sub (23. Chicago Cubs), who will be listed as the first Korean Major League hitter, has been set.

The General Manager of the Cubs, Jim Hendry said during an interview with Korean reporters on the 2nd, “After Choi, Hui-Sub finishes the Minor League game schedule (Iowa Cubs) on the 3rd, I will promote him to the Major League on the 4th.” The promotion of Choi, Hui-Sub to the Major League is because the Major League entry has been extended to 40 players since the 2nd. The Cubs, which is in the 5th place in the Central Division with a record of 57 wins and 79 losses and ruined their hope for postseason, is planning to test a Minor League hopeful Choi, Hui-Sub.

Mr. Hendry added about the prediction of Choi, Hui-Sub’s next season, “It depends how he plays this time.”

In the Cubs, a veteran hitter Fred McGrief, who is recording 476 homers and 1492 RBI’s in his career, is taking the first base. Although McGrief has played up to his reputation this season with 0.270 average, 28 homers, and 92 RBI’s, the Cubs is hesitating to resign for the next season because of his age of 39.

If the hopeful Choi, Hui-Sub shows a sure possibility, the Cubs might give up resigning with McGrief and guarantee Choi, Hui-Sub the starting first baseman. If, on the other hand, Choi, Hui-Sub plays under the expectation, he should spend 1~2 more years in the Minor.

Therefore, to Choi, Hui-Sub, September is a very important time to put his baseball career. Choi, Hui-Sub’s agent Lee, Chi-Hoon, who is in Seoul for business, conveyed on the 2nd, “I talked to Hui-Sub on the phone and he said he would never go back to the Minor if he would be promoted to the Major. He has a stronger will than ever before that he would not give up the chance in his hand.”

Choi, Hui-Sub, who was in a slump at the Minor League AAA Iowa Cubs due to a wrist injury, started 133 games in this injury-free season and made the best record with 0.290 average (137 hits in 472 at-bats), 26 homers, and 97 RBI’s. He is in the second place in homerun and RBI race following Julio Juleta (30 homeruns, 102 RBI’s), and making a sure slugger image with 24 doubles.

Choi, Hui-Sub, who quit the Korea University and entered the American Pro Baseball with 1.2 million dollars on April 1999, was evaluated as ‘the best first baseman in the Minor’ by the authoritative baseball magazine in America ‘Baseball America’ with commanding physical appearances of 1m95 and 115kg and an excellent hitting talent, and he participated the ‘Future’s Game,’ the All-Star Game of the Minor, in 2 consecutive years. If he stands on the Major League stage on the 4th, it will be the third in Asia following Suzuki Ichiro (Seattle Mariners) and Sinjo Suyoshi (San Francisco Giants) of Japan.

Sang-Soo Kim ssoo@donga.com