Park Chan-ho, the first Korean Major Leaguer, has just emerged from a three-year slump during which he must have felt like hiding behind the dugout. Having made a miraculous comeback this season and achieved his 100th career win, he shared a piece of his mind.
Park Chan-ho held a private interview with KoreAm Journal, an English magazine that targets second generation Korean-Americans, and talked about the heartache that he has been suffering since his transfer to the Texas Rangers.
Park Chan-ho revealed that when he was in his prime, there was a time when he was frustrated with excessive attention from Korean fans and wished they would go away. He said, I now realize that my fans had been giving me their attention not because they loved baseball, but because they are Korean.
When he moved to Texas Park Chan-ho was promised a salary of $65 million (about 65 billion won) for five years, which is a remarkable sum. Surprisingly, however, he called his own life an ugly life. People think I am living a grand life with money and fame, but if you look into the other side you will see it is distorted by heavy pressure.