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Ryu Hyun-jin receives Special Player of the Year at KBO event

Ryu Hyun-jin receives Special Player of the Year at KBO event

Posted December. 05, 2019 07:46,   

Updated December. 05, 2019 07:46


“Korean monster” pitcher Ryu Hyun-jin, 32, who had a great season at the Los Angeles Dodgers, has been awarded the Special Player of the Year at the 2019 CHO-A PHARM.Co. Pro Baseball Grand Prize, which took place at Conrad Seoul on Wednesday. He won 14 games and lost 5 while his ERA stood at 2.32, the lowest in Major League Baseball (MLB). In addition, he is the first Korean baseball player who started the All-Star Game.

“Kim Kwang-hyun is the best pitcher in Korean Baseball League (KBO). He suffered an injury but quickly recovered,” Ryu said when he met Kim Kwang-hyun, 31, former SK Wyverns pitcher who is also a free agent. “I am sure he will continue to do great in the United States.” Kim finished the season 17-6 with an ERA of 2.51 in the KBO is preparing to enter the MLB with the consent of SK. He is currently posted in the posting system.

Both Ryu and Kim still do not know for which teams they will play next year. “I do not want to play in the same league as him. I hope we will not have to play against each other. It would be awkward for both of us,” Ryu said. “There is nothing more important than health when playing in the United States. The second important is to get accustomed to the team.”

Ryu is trying to stay focused on baseball by doing as few activities as possible that are irrelevant to baseball such as being on a TV show. His agent, Scott Boras, is negotiating for his next team. The U.S. free market has just started becoming more active. The New York Yankees are soon going to meet with big players such as Gerrit Cole and Stephen Strasburg. It is expected that the generous baseball team will sign them to a lengthy 200-million-dollar contract. According to news outlets on Tuesday, Zack Wheeler, who is considered one of the best starters along with Ryu, has been also offered a handsome deal, which is worth more than 100 million dollars. When asked about the negotiations, Ryu said, “All I can tell you is my agent is working on it.”

When asked about his wife, Bae Ji-hyeon, the Korean pitcher who will become a father next year, said, “I am grateful to have her by my side as I know it is tough to live in a foreign country. I want her to know I love her. I need to work harder because we will have a baby.” He also said, “I will try my best to lower the ERA next year and will definitely play for Hanwha if I come back the KBO one day.”

Heon-Jae Lee uni@donga.com