Honkball Week Review

July 17th, 2018

It is raining in D.C. The weather reports call for the rain to stop prior to the All Star game being played. This gives myworld an opportunity to provide an update on the Honkball tournament in Haarlam, Netherlands, which myworld may have tried to attend if not for the All Star weekend here in D.C.

Taiwan 3 Netherlands 2

A mild upset with the Taiwan kids upsetting the veteran Netherlands team that won this event two years ago. Taiwan used a group of four pitchers to limit the Netherlands bats to two runs. Cheng Hao Wang pitched the last three innings to secure the victory. Dudley Lenora drove in both runs for the Netherlands with a solo shot in the fifth and a sacrifice fly in the third. Netherlands also had runners thrown out at home and third to ruin scoring opportunities.

Japan 7 Cuba 1

Don’t know if Cuba still has the same entourage that followed them around when they played in tournaments before all of their top players left for the United States. They lost their second game of the tournament, Japan using six different pitchers to limit Cuba to one run. That run was unearned. Japanese pitchers combined to strike out 11 Cubans. Takashi Umino was the big bat for Japan with an RBI single in the fourth and a two run blast in the eighth. Hitting behind him in the order Ryosuke Kodame was 2 for 2 with two walks. Japan assaulted the Cuban pitching staff for 14 hits.

Italy 7 Cuba 3

Italy stunned the Cubans, eliminating them from any hope of playing in the championship match. Italy threw minor league player and NPB pitcher Allesandro Maestri for six innings and he allowed just one unearned run to the anemic Cuban bats. Alex Bassani pitched the last three innings, giving up two ninth inning runs but surviving to secure the win. Ex major leaguer Chris Colabello returned to the Italian team after playing with them in the World Baseball Classic and was a perfect 1 for 1 with three walks, driving in the first two runs with a double in the first.

Japan 6 Germany 1

Japan remained undefeated with their win over Germany. Masato Morishita worked six innings and tamed the German bats to just one run. Sascha Koch kept the game close, limiting Japan to two runs in his six innings. Japan erupted for four runs in the eighth to put the game out of reach, Ryosuke Kodame getting the clutch two run single to account for the late run support. Toshiya Sato banged out three hits including two doubles to drive in two. Ryosuke Tatsumi also collected three hits.

Harper Wins Homerun Derby

July 17th, 2018

This was a fun event to watch, more fun than watching it on television. The stars like J.D. Martinez, Giancarlo Stanton and Aaron Judge may have been absent but there were still sluggers to watch. It’s similar to the slam dunk contest in the NBA, where the greatest players pass on the competition giving others an opportunity to make a name for themselves. In this homerun contest Alex Bregman was the only American League slugger against seven National League participants.

The first round had Jesus Aguilar slug it out against Rhys Hoskins. Both are second year players with Hoskins an up and comer and Aguilar a right handed first baseman that is a trait not liked by many teams. The Cleveland Indians traded him cheaply to the Milwaukee Brewers last year after they designated him for assignment. This year he did not even have a starting job in the starting lineup with the Brewers until an injury to Eric Thames opened a spot up for him. Aguilar hit too many balls up the middle and lost out to Hoskins 17-12.

Another first round match pitted Alex Bregman against Kyle Schwarber, two more players fairly new to the major leaguers. Myworld was surprised Bregman had hit 20 homeruns at the All Star break. We don’t consider him much of a slugger. Kyle has always been able to hit the ball far, but his consistency hitting for a high average has kept him out of the limelight of top sluggers. During the contest Alex hit too many line drive shots that did not have enough loft to carry over the fence. He fell short of Kyle 16-15 his final swing falling short as it hit the fence. Schwarber had the luxury of hitting one homerun in the bonus round (You get 30 seconds more of swings if you hit two balls greater than 440 feet). Bregman did not have the luxury of having a bonus round and that proved to be the difference.

Max Muncy was matched against Javier Baez. Last year the Oakland Athletics released Muncy. The Dodgers picked him up and injuries have turned him from bench player to starter. Baez is not the first player you think of when you consider a slugger. Kris Bryant may have been a better choice. Muncy just surpassed Baez 17 - 16.

Bryce Harper went up against the Atlanta Braves Freddie Freeman. Freddie took the boos from Nationals fans in stride. His swing was geared more towards opposite field, limiting his homerun pop. He only hit 12 out. Bryce did not even need his full four minutes or the bonus round he earned to pass him with 13. The crowd was clearly happy with Harper advancing to the semifinals.

The best battle was when Rhys Hoskins slugged it out against Kyle Schwarber. Both got bonus seconds by hitting two homeruns greater than 440 feet. Rhys fell short 21 to 20 in one of the more riveting battles.

Bryce again took advantage of a struggling hitter in a semi-final match. Muncy could only hit 12 out and Bryce did not need his bonus time or his full four minutes to stroke 13 balls out. The crowd started to get into it now knowing Bryce would appear in the finals.

In the finals Kyle gave Bryce a challenge taking 18 deep. The crowd was cheering Bryce on with each blast over the fence. During the two timeouts the hitters had Bryce was getting into the event, urging the crowd to cheer him on. His father was pitching to him and seemed to have trouble finding the strike zone. Bryce was forced to take a lot of pitches as the time wore down.

It appeared Bryce was going to fall short of passing Kyle but he went deep on eight balls in his last 9 swings to tie Kyle at 18 to 18 with bonus time swings in his bank. Many were critical that his dad was throwing pitches before the umpire signaled him to pitch the ball. The rules stated that you had to wait until the ball landed before throwing your next pitch. Bryce (and a few of the hitters before Bryce) did have pitchers toss balls before their previous hit had touched the ground or landed into the stands. The home plate umpire should have probably disqualified some of those earlier hits if the pitch was thrown before he gave the okay to discourage these early pitches from happening later in the event. Because he had not players push the limit. Bryce took a couple more swings with his bonus time and then hit his 19th with plenty of time left to spare to beat Kyle 19-18.

The two more surprising hitters were high schoolers Bobby Witt Jr, and Rece Hinds. They were participating in the high school finals of the homerun contest. Bobby Witt Jr. is the son of long time pitcher Bobby Witt, who pitched for the Texas Rangers for a number of years. He is the top high school player for the 2019 draft according to Baseball America. Hinds is the fifth best prospect. Each player had 60 seconds to swing the bat. Both players may have hit balls farther than their major league counterparts in sending balls into the left field bleachers. Witt Jr won the contest hitting last. You have to think some of the major leaguers were envious of the carry of these high school kids.

Overall a much funner contest to witness in person than watch on the television screen. You can just appreciate the shots more as you watch them soar into the bleachers.

United States Outslugs World in Future Games Homerfest

July 16th, 2018

It felt like a homerun derby with a game inside. Seven homeruns were hit in the United States 10-6 win over the World. Rather than write a narrative of the game my world will do a half inning by half inning breakdown.

Top of First - World Hitting. Just one of three 1-2-3 innings in the game. Mitch Keller made it look easy zipping fastballs at 95-97.

Bottom of First - United States hitting. Jesus Luzardo was reaching 95 with his fastball. He retired the first two hitters but ran the count full to Brendan Rodgers and he ripped a pitch into left center field for a double. Nate Lowe followed bouncing a single up the middle. Rodgers would have scored but centerfielder Luis Basabe bobbled the ball. Lowe’s ambition outran his feet and he was thrown out at second trying to take the extra base.

Top of Second - Justus Sheffield comes into the game for the United States. He throws 93-96 but also mixes in a lot of breaking pitches. Seuly Matias goes the opposite way to crush one into the Nats bullpen. Sheffield settles down and retires the next three hitters but the World has tied the game 1-1.

Bottom of Second - Luzardo works his second inning and strikes out two, Danny Jansen leaving the batter’s box without swinging his bat. Alex Kirilloff hits a one out single.

Top of Third - Sheffield starts the inning and gives up a one out single to right center to Dawel Lugo. That brings on Hunter Greene. He is the only pitcher who hits triple digits with his fastball, consistently hitting 101 to 103. Luis Basabe was the first batter he faced and deposited one of his 102 mile per hour fastballs into the right field bleachers. Fernando Tatis is also not intimidated and lines a single into left field. He steals second and advances to third on a fly out. Seuly Matias can not bring Tatis home, striking out to end the inning.

Bottom of Third - Bryan Mata comes on to start the third and has trouble throwing strikes walking Ke’Bryan Hayes to start the third. Bo Bichette bounces a single up the middle and a wild pitch advances the runners to second and third with just one out. Brendan Rodgers strikes out swinging at a pitch way out of the strike zone. Nate Lowe grounds out to third and the United States blow a scoring opportunity, down 3-2.

Top of Fourth - Greene continues to struggle walking the lead off batter Yordan Alvarez. Luis Urias is hit on his arm protector to put two runners on with no outs. Jesus Sanchez breaks his bat and despite his speed grounds into a 4-6-3 double play. The United States turns to Matt Manning for the third out. Miguel Amaya flies to right.

Bottom of the Fourth - The Aussie Lewis Thorpe comes on to start the fourth. He starts out fast by striking out Keston Hiura. Alex Kirilloff hits a sinking liner into left. Yusniel Diaz tries to make a sliding catch but bobbles the ball and it drops to the grass for a single. Danny Jansen ties the game up at 3-3 pulling a pitch into the left field bleachers. Kyle Lewis walks setting the stage for Ke’Bryan Hayes to blast a pitch over the left field bullpen to give the United States a 5-3 lead. Jesus Tinoco came on to pitch and retired the last two hitters on fly outs to the outfield. Thorpe was throwing a comfortable 93-94.

Top of Fifth - It does not take long for the World to get back in the game. After Matt retired the first two hitters Fernando Tatis lined a single into right field. A wild pitch advanced him to second but it didn’t matter when Yusniel Diaz deposited a pitch into the right centerfield bleachers. Back to back singles by Matias and Alvarez but two runners on. Manning reared back and struck out Urias. For a player who has a history for being tough to strike out Urias was the only player on the World squad to strike out twice in this game.

Bottom of Fifth - The second 1-2-3 inning. Tinoco retired the first two hitters on ground outs. Yoan Lopez came on to face pinch hitter Ryan Mountcastle. Ryan swung and missed at three fastballs crossing the plate at 96-97 miles per hour.

Top of Sixth - Dakota Hudson may have been the second hardest thrower after Greene. His fastball hit 97-98. He retired the International squad in order in the sixth, striking out one.

Bottom of Sixth - The second Aussie came on to pitch. Alex Wells retired the two hitters he faced. Of all the pitchers in the game his fastball was the most pedestrian, hitting just 90-91. He was replaced by South African Kieran Lovejoy who brought the fastball velocity back up to 96-97. Lovejoy gave up a solo shot to Taylor Trammell into the centerfield bleachers, taking his first at bat of the game and giving the United States a 6-5 lead.

Top of Seventh - Shaun Anderson comes in to start the seventh. He has no problems retiring the first two hitters. Yusniel Diaz does a de ja vu, except he sends one of the balls into the Brewhouse in the centerfield bleachers. In that inning Padre Buddy Reed made a nice running catch to rob Padre Fernando Tatis Jr. of a single. After the catch he started to run off the field, possibly forgetting the number of outs. Heliot Ramos pinch hit for Matias, lining a single into center. Brendan Rodgers showed off his defensive chops at second making a sliding stop of a grounder hit by Yordan Alvarez to end the inning.

Bottom of Seventh - Adonis Medina starts the inning. Jo Adell greets him with a double to right center and advances to third on a passed ball. Medina gets back to back K’s, but the second strikeout slips past the catcher to the back stop to allow Rodgers to advance to first. Jo Adell scores. The count went full to Peter Alonso and he hit a skyscraper that soared far above the foul pole, travelled past the bleachers and bounced onto the pavilion. It was the longest homerun myworld has witnessed at Nationals stadium since Albert Pujols hit the pavilion while playing with the Cardinals. Pujols did not hit his ball as high. Keibert Ruiz had to leave the game early in the inning after being hit by a foul tip, bringing out Miguel Amaya for his second appearance of the game. Jorge Guzman gets out of the inning giving up an infield single to Buddy Reed. Luis Garcia makes a diving stop but threw off balance, the ball skipping into the dugout. A second whiff in the game by Andrew Kinzner ends the inning.

Top of Eighth - C.D. Pelham started the inning but failed to get the two hitters he faced out. Peter Alonso waved at a ground ball hit right at him, the ball trickling to right field to put runners at first and third. Kyle Wright came on to pitch. Amaya hit a pitch too shallow into center field to score the go ahead run. Andres Gimenez grounded into a 4-6-3 double play.

Bottom of Eighth - Touki Touissaint sees the bottom of the eighth. Taylor Trammell takes Touki deep. He thinks he has his second homer turns to the dugout smiling as he trots past first. Unfortunately the ball hits off the centerfield fence and kicks into right field. Trammell puts on the after burners and makes it to third with a triple, but he probably could have had an inside the park homerun as far as the ball kicked into right field. The first fly to right from Ke’Bryan Hayes did not score Trammell. The second fly from Jo Adell to left field scored Trammell to make it 10-6. Touki was dealing at 95-97 striking out Carter Kieboom. For Carter it was his second whiff of the game in two at bats, not making much of an impression to Nationals fans.

Top of the Ninth - Dylan Cease comes on to retire the first two hitters. The portly Luis Ortiz came on to face Yusniel Diaz. He said something while on the mound that got the players laughing. He only needed one pitch to get Diaz to ground to third to end the game.

Nanum Teams Wins KBO All Star Game

July 15th, 2018

For the first time since they have been broken out into Team Nanum and Dream Team in 2015, Team Nanum won an All Star game. The 22 year old Kim Ha-Seong, who replaced Jung-Ho Kang as the Nexen Heroes shortstop was the All Star MVP with his two homeruns. His three run homer in the eighth clinched the game for Team Nanum. He was also named the teams perfect hitter, a contest where batters try to hit targets on the field.

Jared Hoying was also up for consideration for the MVP. He contributed three hits, including a solo homer in the second to score the first run for Team Nanum and a RBI double in the seventh to break a 5-5 tie.

Dae-Ho Lee won the homerun derby, beating out Hoying for the honors.

Germany Stuns Cuba in HonKball Competetion

July 15th, 2018

This has to be a first for German baseball, to beat Cuba. It is also a reflection on how far down the Cuban talent level has gone. Most of their top players are in the United States.

Cuba started Leandro Martinez but it was not his fault Germany scored four runs off him. Three Cuban errors allowed three unearned runs to score. Germany committed six errors but they were able to dodge the bullet a bit better than Cuba allowing only two unearned runs.

A dropped fly ball by leftfielder Jorge Jhonson on what should have been the third out allowed Germany to score the first run in the opening frame. Errors by Anibal Medina and Jorge Aloma brought in two more unearned runs in the third to give Germany a 3-1 lead.

Cuba erupted for three runs in the fourth, assisted by two German errors, though only one of the runs was considered unearned. Orlando Acebey and Eduardo Blanco contributing RBI singles to give Cuba a 4-3 lead.

In the fifth Eric Brenk slashed his third single of the game. He scored his third run of the game, the tying run after Simon Guhring drove one deep enough to right field to score Eric on a sacrifice fly. A Max Boldt double, his third hit of the day set up the go ahead run in the seventh. After an intentional walk to load the bases Cuba failed to turn two on a ground ball and Germany scored the winning run.

Cuba did load the bases in the top of the ninth. After retiring the first two hitters in his third inning of work, Cuban born Enorbel Marquez loaded the bases on a single, walk and the sixth error by Germany. He ran the count full to Jorge Jhonson before getting him to fly out to center to end the game.

Japan 1 Taiwan 0

Japan won a second consecutive 1-0 game. They were able to string together 10 hits but two caught stealings and a ground out double play erased three rallies. They scored their only run in the fourth after a Toshiya Sato double and a Yuma Tongu single drove him in for the only run of the game. Matsumoto Wataru pitched seven scoreless innings allowing just four hits and striking out nine. Hiroshi Kaino was almost unhittable in his two innings of work, striking out five of the six hitters he faced. Taiwan only saw one runner settle on second base and that was in the fifth inning. C.W. Huang was picked off after he had doubled with two out in the fifth so he was not on second base long.

Netherlands 7 Italy 0

Netherlands made it two shutouts in a row over their two European counterparts. After blanking Germany 6-0 in their opener they went out and zipped their European rivals Italy 7-0. Ageless Rob Cordemans did the honors on the mound going six innings and allowing just two hits. He struck out nine and walked two. Nick Urbanus, Gilmer Lampe and Yurendell deCaster each drove in two runs for Netherlands.

Two Shutouts Start Honkball Week

July 14th, 2018

One of these days myworld will return to Haarlem to watch Honkball. It is a fun tournament with a day game, a long break and then a night game - all for one price. I just wish there were more restaurants in the area where the ball parks are located. It is always good to eat something other than ballpark food.

The opening of Honkball saw two shutouts. The first was Japan nipping Italy 1-0, scoring a run in the bottom of the 10th to get the win. Masato Morishita, who started two games in the United States college exhibition series the previous week threw seven innings of two hit shutout ball against Italy. Luis Lugo matched him for five shutout innings, also only allowing two hits. Despite having the bases loaded with no outs Italy could not score in their extra inning. Japan laid down a successful sacrifice and then got a walk off bunt single from Takashi Umino in his first at bat to pull out the victory. Hiromi Ito got the win for Japan, striking out six of the nine hitters he faced.

The defending champ Netherlands dominated Germany 6-0. Orlando Yntema pitched seven innings of one hit ball, giving up a lead off double and then retiring 21 of the next 22 hitters he faced. Netherlands got three hits and a homerun from Dwayne Kemp to lead the offense.

Top Leftfield Prospects in the Minor Leagues

July 14th, 2018

It is tough to identify left field prospects. Teams like to see power from this position, but it usually fits a player who is lacking one or two tools. Sometimes a team will move a corner infielder here, or they may have two corner outfielders who have the ability to play right field. If a team is blessed with too many centerfielders the player with the lesser arm will move here. The players identified below have played some left field in the minor leagues, but that still may not be their ultimate position as they rise through the ranks.

1. Taylor Trammell OF (Reds) - Taylor was a first round supplemental pick in the 2016 draft. He has the speed to play center but his arm is short and if he doesn’t fit in center his best position will be left. In the Florida State League the Reds have moved him around all three outfield positions. The bat should provide power while his legs will steal bases giving the Reds a possible 20/20 player or better. In the pitcher friendly Florida State League he has only sent six balls over the fence but he has hit .295 with 16 stolen bases. He shows good patience at the plate with a .394 OBA. The Reds have been promoting him one level at a time so expect him not to play AA until 2019.

2. Julio Pablo Martinez OF (Rangers) - Julio signed out of Cuba for $2.8 million. The speed is there to play center. The arm may be better suited for left. While he is listed at 5′11″ reports list him more at 5′9″. He dominated when he played in the Dominican Summer League hitting .409 with a 1.288 OPS. That resulted in a promotion state side. It will take him awhile to get used to minor league pitching. Cubans have struggled when they are first exposed to breaking pitches, especially the slider and Julio has struck out in 23 of his 21 games, struggling with a .234 average. At 22 years of age you would like him to make the adjustments in a league dominated by high schoolers. Most of his time has been in centerfield but he has seen three games in left. Adonis Garcia came over as a smallish centerfielder and eventually moved to the infield. Myworld believes Julio has more tools than Adonis, but time will tell.

3. Yordan Alvarez OF (Astros) - The Dodges originally signed the 6′5″ Cuban for $2 million but then traded him shortly after to the Astros. The best position for Yordan may be first base, but that position is a bit crowded in the Astros organization. He is not a bad runner but his arm is below average. That won’t be a problem if Yordan continues to dominate with the bat. In AA he hit .303 with 13 homeruns and a .949 OPS. The Astros are looking for some production from the leftfield position and if the players they put out there continue to struggle Yordan may get the opportunity. First he must master AAA where in minimal at bats (19) he is hitting only .105.

4. Josh Naylor OF (Padres) - At 5′11 and 250 pounds Josh is a big guy who can hit the ball a long way. The Canadian was a first round pick of the Marlins and traded to the Padres for Andrew Cashner. Since he has already made eight errors in 54 games for an .899 fielding percentage myworld does not see how the Padres can make him a left fielder. At AA Texas he is finally showing the bat that made him a first round pick. He has already hit a career high 12 homeruns and his .319 average is his highest since his rookie season in 2015. A 46/47 walk to whiff ratio shows a rare combination of power and contact. Expect him to get a September promotion.

5. Willie Calhoun OF (Rangers) - The Dodgers drafted the 5′8″ slugger in the fourth round of the 2015 draft and stuck him at second. He did not fit there defensively and when the Dodgers traded him to the Rangers they moved him to left. With Leody Taveras destined for center Willie and Julio Pablo will have to fight it out for the left field position. Julio is probably the better defensive player but Willie packs more pop in his small frame. Last year he hit 32 homeruns. This year he only has seven, but he tends to warm up with the weather. Willie has hit 26 doubles with a .300 average.

6. Christin Stewart OF (Tigers) - A first round pick in 2015. Christin is the typical bat first and defense later type of player. His best position may be as a designated hitter. His arm is weak and his speed is below average. That weak defense has kept Christin in the minors. The last two years his bat has produced 24 and 28 homeruns. This year he has already slugged 17 homeruns, 15 of them in AAA. Expect the rebuilding Tigers to give him his major league debut this year where he will play primarily at the DH position with spot starts in left field.

7. Brent Rooker OF (Twins) - Brent was a first round pick of the Twins in 2017. The speed in his legs are best suited for first and his arm is below average. First base is the position he played in college, but to get his power bat in the lineup the Twins have been giving him a lot of time in left field, despite his defensive weaknesses. This year he has slugged 15 homeruns with a .493 slugging average. Reducing his swings and misses (107 in 86 games) could increase his average (.264) and his power numbers.

8. Chris Shaw OF (Giants) - The dilemma for the first round 2015 pick is Brandon Belt at first base. That happens to be the best position for Chris. His legs are plodding but his arm is decent for the outfield. Getting his bat in the lineup without having to trade Belt or keep Buster Posey behind the plate during his declining years is the reason for his outfield move. Last year he hit a career high 24 homeruns. This year he has already slugged 18. A 13/104 walk to whiff ratio in just 67 games is a cause for concern and a reason for his low .255 average. Major league pitchers will exploit that lack of patience weakness but the Giants will find out if Chris can hang when they call him up in Sepember.

9. Lazaro Armenteros OF (Athletics) - The Athletics shelled out $3 million to sign the Cuban in 2016. He is a toolsey outfielder except for his arm. The speed is there to play center but because he expects to get bigger as he matures left field should be his ultimate position. After playing in the Rookie league last year the Athletics have him in the full season Low A league this year. Injuries have limited him to 36 games but he has shown the power to play corner with five homeruns with a .469 slugging percentage. Still a teenager at 19 the Athletics can be patient with Lazaro, giving him a full season in Low A.

10. Buddy Reed OF (Padres) - Buddy Reed was a second round pick of the Padres in 2016. He is a better defensive leftfielder than Naylor but lacks the burner speed to play center and the rocket arm to fit in right. At 6′4″ the power had yet to manifest itself in his first two years. This year he has broken out with 12 homeruns with a .542 slugging percentage. While he does not have great speed, he has shown the base stealing acumen to steal 33 bases this year. The .324 average in the California League has gotten him a promotion to the less pitcher friendly San Antonio ball park. If the power continues the Padres will have to find room for him in what is turning out to be a crowded outfield picture.

Dice-K Gets Rocked in All Star Game

July 13th, 2018

Daisuke Matsuzaka is not retired yet. After his performance in the first All Star game in Japan perhaps that thought has crossed his mind. He started seven games in Japan for the Chunichi Dragons to finish 3-3 with a 2.41 ERA in the first half of the season. This was enough to get him voted by the fans to be the starting pitcher in the first game of the All Star game.

He lasted one inning but probably wished he was never voted in. The Pacific League roasted him for five runs on four hits in his one inning of work. Shogo Akiyama rocked him for a leadoff homer and Tomoya Mori jolted him for a three run shot.

The Continental League battled back to tie the game with five runs in the second and third innings. Seiya Suzuki hit a solo homerun in the second and homerun derby winner Yoshitomo Tsutsugo continued his slugging performance with a two run shot two batters later off Pacific League starter Yusei Kikuchi. Yoshiro Miyazaki added a two run homer to tie the game in the third.

Alfredo Despaigne delivered a pinch hit RBI single in the sixth to break the 5-5 tie to give the Pacific League the lead. Hotaka Yamakawa followed with an RBI single in a four consecutive hit barrage off Onelki Garcia. The Pacific League hung on for the 7-6 win.

Interesting that no foreigners participated in the homerun derby prior to the first All Star game.

Korea to Host 18 and Under World Cup

July 13th, 2018

In 2019 Gijang County, Busan, Korea will be host to the 18 and under World Cup. The games will be played at the Gijang-Hyundai Dream Ballpark, a four field facility built in time in 2016 to host the Woman’s Baseball World Cup in 2016. The last Under 18 World Cup was held in Thunder Bay, Ontario, Canada in 2017. The United States defeated Korea in the championship match. The United States has won the last four 18 and under World Cups. That still puts them two short of Cuba who has won 11. Korea has won five 18 and Under World Cups all while being hosted by either the United States, Canada or Cuba.

New Posting System for KBO and Major Leagues

July 13th, 2018

The Korean Baseball Organization (KB)) and the major leagues have agreed to a new posting system. Under this new system which is similar to an agreement made between the major leagues and Japan, a Korean player that is posted can negotiate a contract with any major league team. The posting team is then rewarded with a percentage of the total value of the contract. Previously, the Korean player could only negotiate with the team that submitted the highest posted price and then that player could negotiate only with that team.

For guaranteed contracts of less than $25 million the Korean club will get a payment of 17.5 percent. Contracts between $25 million and $50 million the payment will be 20 percent of the first $25 million and 17.5 percent of the next $25 million. Contracts that exceed $50 million will have 20 percent of the first $25 million, 17.5 percent of the next $25 million and 15 percent of any amount greater than $50 million.

The new agreement has also shortened the time frame for the negotiating period for posted players from November 1 to March 1 to November 1 through December 5.

While Korean players applauded the new procedures because it gave a greater amount of the contract to the players and allowed them to negotiate with all teams, it may also provide a disincentive for teams to post their stars.

The above information was acquired from Yonhap News.