Archive for September, 2013

Another Cuban Defection - Raciel Iglesias

Thursday, September 26th, 2013

Cuba lost one of their better relievers when Raciel Iglesias left to try to play for the major leagues.  At 23 years of age and having played three years in the Cuban Nacional Series he would not go against a team’s international salary restriction.  Two sites, baseballdecuba and Baseball America have reported on his departure.  You can see his three year’s of stats for the Isla de Juventud here:  http://www.baseballdecuba.com/newsite/newsContainer.asp?id=3332 

Cuba does not have a lot of pitchers who throw hard, but despite his slight frame of 5′11″, 165 pounds Raciel can bring his fastball into the 90-94 mile per hour range.  He pitched for the Cuban National team in the World Baseball Classic where he appeared in five games, putting up a 3.86 ERA in four plus innings but striking out six.

Myworld was at a game in Durham that Raciel Iglesias pitched.  He was hitting 94-95 miles per hour on the radar gun with an excellent breaking pitch.  He struck out two of the three hitters he faced in the ninth inning.

This would be the second major defection of a Cuban player.  Slugger Jose Abreu defected a couple months ago and is ready to hold tryouts for major league teams.  He has still not been approved by the Foreign Assets Control (FAC) to sign a contract.      

Carp Clinches Playoff Spot in NPB

Wednesday, September 25th, 2013

The Hiroshima Carp clinched the second wild card in the Central Division with a 2-0 win against the Chunichi Dragons.  Bryan Bullington tossed seven innings of shutout ball.  Katsuiro Nagakawa and Kam Mickolio each worked one inning to close out the game.  Brad Eldred drove in both runs with a 2-run homer in the eighth.  Brad finished 3 for 3 to raise his average to .249.

The Hiroshima Carp are four and a half games behind the second place Hanshin Tigers.  The team who finishes in second place gets the home field advantage for virtually all of the wild card contests.  The winner of that match plays the first place Yomiuri Giants for Central League supremacy.

The Pacific League is a wild open race.  The Rakuten Eagles appear to have won their first pennant race with an eight and a half game lead over the second place Lotte Marines.  They are the only team in the Pacific League to have clinched a playoff berth.  If they don’t win the division they have clinched a wild card spot. 

It is wide open with the wild card race in the Pacific League with all the teams still eligible.  The Chiba Lotte Marines and Softbank Hawks are currently two and three in the Pacific, the Marines two games ahead of the Hawks.  The Seibu Lions fall one game back of the Hawks.  Further behind taking the last two spots in the standings are the Orix Buffaloes (five games back) and Nippon Ham fighters (seven and a half back).  With only nine games left on their schedule the Fighters would almost have to win it out to stand any kind of a shot to make the playoffs.     

Next Stop - The Show (cont - 3)

Wednesday, September 25th, 2013

“So the season is almost over.” Larvell clicked his phone shut and slid it into his pouch hanging from his belt. “Not a very good one for the Orioles I’m afraid, but as far as Jason is concerned a rousing success. If Troy can get his act together, with the power displayed by Alexis Panigua and the development of our other draft selections, I am confident the Orioles are headed in the right direction.”

Kevin noted there was no mention of him. That did not appear to be a good sign. “I appreciate you giving me the opportunity to be a part of that success. I enjoyed working with both Jason and Troy. They will both be excellent players.”

“I’m sure neither of them could have gotten this far without your help. Even Alexis benefited from your leadership.” Larvell got up from the chair. He went to the water cooler, but there were no cups in the dispenser.

“So this is where you are going to give me my release? That’s normally the manager’s job.” Kevin thought the statement sounded too abrupt. He regretted saying it as soon as the words spilled from his mouth.

Larvell stopped. He had been searching the counter for cups. He turned to look at Kevin for a few seconds. “The season is still six days from being over. It is too early to be talking releases.” He turned to begin opening the cupboards above him in search of cups. “A philosophical question for you. And try to be honest with yourself. Do you think you have what it takes to be a major league catcher?”

“Are you talking back up or starter?”

Larvell again turned to face Kevin. “Either.”

“At this point in my life I would be happy with just one at bat in the major leagues just to see if I can make contact. If I fail with that at bat then I know it was not meant to be but at least my name will be etched in the record books as being in the major leagues, something I can show my kids once they become old enough to understand. If I have some success perhaps there will be another opportunity to build on that success.”

“Kind of like Moonlight Graham.”

“Who?”

He’s a character in the movie Field of Dreams. He just wanted to get one at bat in the major leagues just to see if he could compete. He didn’t because he went on to become a doctor instead. It is one of my favorite movies.”

“It’s too late for me to become a doctor. I got a wife and kid to support and only a high school education.”

Larvell laughed. “I wasn’t trying to infer you should go to medical school. Moonlight Graham was a catcher. Crash Davis was too. They always seem to make baseball movies where the main characters are either catchers or pitchers. What about general managers?”

“There was Moneyball.”

“That’s right. I forgot about that movie. I was a player once. Just like you. I wasn’t always a general manager. Got drafted out of college, but only because some team thought I could resurrect the skills of my father. That never happened. Like you I got released twice. Tough accepting the fact you are not good enough to make a team, that someone considers you a failure. You go through hours of reflection wondering what you could have done better, vow to work harder to prepare for next season. The reality is it won’t matter. Soon you have to accept the fact there will always be others with greater skills than you. Drive and determination alone can only take you so far. After awhile you start thinking about what else is out there you want to do. It’s tough to leave this game. Sometimes the game just leaves you. A door opens and you ask yourself should I walk in? I also wanted to get my one at bat in the major leagues. It never happened so I went in a different direction. Found myself becoming a general manager. So again I ask the question - do you think you have the tools to be a catcher in the major leagues, whether it is as a backup or starter?”

“I think there are catchers who have reached the major leagues who have gotten an opportunity with lesser skills than I.”

“Fair enough answer. Now the next question I have to ask you - what is it you want from the game Kevin? Other than the one at bat in the major leagues. I’m talking long term. There are other positions just as valuable. You don’t need to make it as a player. You could be a coach or a manager. If you want to punish yourself you could become a general manager. You have skills Kevin that do not translate as well on the playing field as they do in other areas. You know how to manage people. Whether it is in baseball or at IBM, everyone is looking for individuals with those skills.”

“So you want me to become a coach?”

Larvell finally found a collection of cups in one of the lower cupboards he had opened. He took a cup out of the carton and held it under the water cooler, leaving the rest of the cups lying on the counter in the box they came in. The water cooler made a “glug, glug, glug” sound as the water poured into the cup. “I’d still like to keep you with the Orioles. Maybe not as a player but in some other capacity. Perhaps as a coach. We have made a commitment to China to send someone over to Wuxi and other areas to help train some of their players to become better ballplayers. It was kind of a compromise we made with the Chinese clubs to keep Jason with the Orioles. I don’t think they ever realized how good Jason would become. I hear you plan on being over in China after the season. If you can find some time I would still like to keep you in contract to be our lead representative in training some of their players over there. You think you’d have any interest in that? We could work it around your schedule.”

Top Ten After Ten - Padres

Monday, September 23rd, 2013

There were not a lot of 2003 prospects who were instrumental in the Padres winning the Western Division titles in 2005 and 2006.  More than half of their top ten list never made it to the major leagues.  Below is the list of top ten prospects from 2003 as identified by Baseball America.

1. Xavier Nady OF - Xavier was the Padres starting right fielder in 2003.  He played two more years for the Padres before being traded to the Mets for Mike Cameron.  He bounced around after that, never finding his raw power to stick in the starting lineup.  The most homeruns he hit in one year was 25 in 2008 when he split time with the Pirates and Yankees.  After that season he spent more time on the bench, never hitting more than four homeruns.

2. Khalil Greene SS - Greene was the Padres starting shortstop in 2004, finishing second in the rookie of the year voting.  He had a career high in homeruns in 2007 with 27.  It was after that season it was discovered he suffered from a social anxiety disorder.  He was traded to St. Louis but continued to struggle with his demons.  He retired from the game in 2009 because of his social anxiety disorder.

3. Mark Phillips LHP - Mark was a first round draft pick in 2000.  He never got past A ball with his last year in 2003 when he played for the Yankees minor league system.  The Yankees traded Rondell White to the Padres in exchange for Phillips. 

4. Tagg Bozied 1B - Tagg took the route of many power hitting first basemen.  He played eight seasons in AAA, but never sniffed the majors.  He did go to Taiwan in 2008 to play for the Brother Elephants in the CPBL.

5. Jake Gautreau 2B - Jake was a 2001 first round pick after leading the NCAA in RBIs.  He made it as high as AAA, but never the major leagues.

6. Ben Howard RHP - Ben played three brief seasons from 2002-2004, two with the Padres and the last season with the Marlins.  He slugged around in the minor leagues until 2008 before calling it quits.  He was involved in a single car crash during spring training in 2002, the accident killing one of his teammates Mike Darr.   

7. Josh Barfield 2B - The son of Jessie.  Josh had one good season with the Padres in 2006, was traded to the Indians for Kevin Kouzmanoff and had a disappointing season in 2007.  He only played two more major league seasons, getting 53 total at bats.

8. Mike Nicolas RHP - He got as high as AA in 2003 but retired after that season.

9. Rusty Tucker LHP - Another pitcher who got as high as AA, but never the major leagues.  He played until 2008.

10. Cory Stewart LHP - Cory reached AAA before calling it quits in 2005.

Other prospects who made a significant impact in the major leagues.

12. Jason Bay OF - The Padres traded Jason to the Pirates for Brian Giles.  With Pittsburgh he won the Rookie of the Year award in the National League in 2004 and made two All Star teams.  He also made an All Star team while playing for the Boston Red Sox.  He leads all players in homeruns at PNC park with 61 and is third in career homeruns by a Canadian with 222, behind Larry Walker and Matt Stairs.

13. Justin Germano RHP - He played one season in Japan, one season in Korea and eight years in the major leagues.  His career 5.29 ERA shows his struggles in the major leagues.

21. Shane Victorino OF - Shane was selected as a Rule V pick from the Dodgers.  He was returned to the Dodgers.  The Phillies drafted him as a Rule V pick in 2004 and he stuck, putting up a pretty good career in the process.  He played eight years for the Phillies where he won three gold gloves and made two All Star teams.  He signed as a free agent with the Red Sox in 2013. 

2003 draft picks who made a significant impact in the major leagues.

Tim Stauffer was their first round pick.  He made his major league debut with the Padres in 2005 and is still pitching for them in 2013.  Dirk Hayhurst was an eighth round pick.  He wrote a book about his minor league experiences with the Padres, but only got a couple cups of coffee with the major leagues.  Those were their only impact players in the 2003 draft.     

San Marino Wins Italian Series for Third Year in a Row

Monday, September 23rd, 2013

San Marino got seven innings of shutout ball from Jim Magrane to beat Rimini 4-1 to win the Italian Series for the third year in a row three games to two.  They had to win the last three games of the series to take the championship.  Magrane allowed only two hits and walked three.  It was his second outing in three days as he threw seven innings on Friday, giving up only one run.  He also pitched in game one the previous week, working seven innings and giving up one run, but not getting the win after Rimini won the game in the eleventh inning.

Joseph Mazzuca was again the big bat for San Marino, hitting a solo shot in the second inning to give San Marino an early 1-0 lead.  He was intentionally walked in the sixth after a Mattia Reginato double.  That did not prevent San Marino from scoring their second run after Simone Albanese singled to make it 2-0.  Albanese would single in the ninth to score Mazzuca with the third run in the game.  The fourth run scored on a wild pitch.

Rimini was able to score their lone run in the bottom of the ninth courtesy of a San Marino error.

Nats Win Final Home Game

Monday, September 23rd, 2013

Chris Coghlan made two errors.  The last one proved critical.  With runners on third and second and one out and the infield in, Wilson Ramos hit a hard grounder at Coghlan that bounced off his leg and rolled toward the visitor’s dugout.  The ricochet allowed pinch runner Eury Perez to score from third for the game winning run as the Nationals beat the Marlins 5-4 to stay alive in the wild card hunt.

With six games remaining and five games out of the wild card the Nationals have to win all their games and hope either the Pittsburgh Pirates or Cincinnati Reds lose all their games.  Since the Reds and Pirates battle it out in the last series of the season they have to hope one of the teams sweeps.

Stephen Strasburg was not sharp in what could be his final home outing of 2013.  He gave up a run in the opening frame when Donavan Solano doubled to start the game off.  He eventually scored on a ground out.  In the second inning Justin Ruggiano took a 96 mile per hour fastball into the left field bullpen to give the Marlins a 2-0 lead.

The Nationals tied the game in the third.  Denard Span singled up the middle to score Anthony Rendon with the first run.  A wild pitch advanced Span to second where a single by Ryan Zimmerman plated him to tie the score at 2-2.

Strasburg gave it right back in the top of the third.  A single by Giancarlo Stanton and a walk set up a single by Adeiny Echevarria to give the Marlins a 3-2 lead.  Strasburg only went six innings before he was pinch hit for in the bottom of the sixth.  He struck out six, gave up six hits and walked two.

Despite his poor outing the Nationals gave Strasburg an opportunity to win the game in the bottom of the sixth.  Tyler Moore was hit by a pitch on a 1-2 count and Steve Lombardozzi turned a hit into left center field into a hustle double.  Denard Span drove them both in with a single off a left handed pitcher just past the diving first baseman to give the Nationals a 4-3 lead.

Tyler Clippard coughed up the lead in the eighth.  Christian Yelich hit a slow bounder up the middle that he hustled into a double.  Giancarlo Stanton grounded a ball past Ryan Zimmerman down the line for another double to tie the game up at 4-4.

Jayson Werth got things started for the Nationals in the bottom of the ninth with a booming lead off double that one hopped the wall down the left field line.  With the count 2-0 Davey Johnson sent in Eury Perez to pinch run for Werth.  Jayson looked at Eury as if he was a foreign object, taking awhile before he departed second base.  The move paid off after a walk to Ian Desmond and Eury and Ian pulled off a double steal.  Marlin catcher Koyie Hill threw the ball to second but Ian snuck his hand onto the bag before the tag.  Ramos then hit his grounder off the leg of Coghlan to drive in the go ahead run.

Game Notes: Stephen Strasburg became the third fastest pitcher since 1900 to get to 500 striekouts.  The two fastest are ex-Cubs he certainly does not want to follow, Kerry Wood and Mark PriorIan Desmond stole two bases in the second game of the doubleheader to reach 20 stolen bases.  It is the second year in a row Ian has hit more than 20 homeruns and stolen 20 or more bases…The Nationals loaded the bases in the fourth with no one out and could not score after Anthony Rendon and Stephen Strasburg struck out and Denard Span grounded to short.  In the fifth they stranded runners on second and third.  Wilson Ramos swung at the first pitch delivered to him and grounded back to the pitcher for the third out…Ryan Zimmerman made a couple excellent defensive plays diving to his right, getting back on his feet and rifling a throw overhand to first to get the out.  In the past he could only one hop those throws to first.  This is the first time myworld has seen the velocity back in Ryan’s overhand throws to first…Giancarlo Stanton hit a foul ball into the 400 section of the bleachers.  It is the first time myworld has seen a foul ball hit into the upperdeck of that section.

Next Stop - The Show (cont - 2)

Monday, September 23rd, 2013

Would Jason really appreciate the promotion to the major leagues? Did he know the amount of hard work many players went through to get to this point? For Jason it all came so naturally, as it did for many players gifted with the tools to play the game. It seemed so unfair. He had seen so many players who didn’t work as hard as him but still made it because of the physical tools they were born with. At least Jason worked hard. Kevin felt good about that.

Jason finally emerged when Kevin finished lacing up his shoes. There was a large smile spread across his flat Asian face. “Something good must have come out of that meeting to see a smile that big.” Kevin already had an idea what it was, but it was better for Jason to tell him.

“They say I go to major leagues. They want me pitch September 11. That day the leader of China be in town. Maybe he go to game I pitch.”

Kevin expected this because Larvell had told him this would be a possibility. “Congratulations, big fella.” Kevin went over and gave him a hug. He felt bad it was not as sincere as it should have been. His sincerity had been trampled on by envy. “I figured this was going to happen. You earned it.”

Jason must have noticed the disappointment on his face. “What about you?” His smile turned to a frown. “You still be joining me, won’t you?”

Kevin did not allow Jason to look into his eyes to see his disappointment. He sat down on his stool, his eyes fixated on the floor. “I’m afraid my days of catching you are just about over. It was a nice ride. We’ve been through a lot together this year. My fate has always been guiding others to the majors. I live through their thrills. I’m happy where this game has taken me so far. I don’t need to go anywhere else. It’s been fun, but in a week our ride is over. You’ll be going there without me. Just promise me you’ll keep in touch.” He wondered if he really believed that. Playing part time and hitting .222 at Norfolk didn’t help his hope of reaching the major leagues.

“How could I not. If not for you this never would have happened.” He sat down at the stool next to Kevin.

There were thirty seconds of silence as Jason searched aimlessly in his locker. He bent to the floor to untie his cleats. He seemed deep in thought. “What about Woo and Warrior. They not separate us like this. We are team. It not fair. You have took me this far. Without you I not make it to majors.”

“You never really needed me to get you to the major leagues. Besides, it’s not like we’re Batman and Robin or Kato and the Green Hornet. They don’t call players up in twos. You either have it or you don’t. You have it. I don’t.”

The hitting coach who had asked Jason to come in to see the manager reappeared. “Kevin. There is someone who wants to talk to you.” The coach sounded more like a drill sergeant addressing a soldier. This can’t be good. They would not release him before the road trip ended, with six more games left in the season? Jason still had his shutout streak going. He needed to catch one more game to see that he broke that streak.

Kevin whispered to Jason, “This is where they tell me what a great job I’ve done, it was a wonderful season, but they don’t have a need for me anymore. Good luck in your future endeavors. I’ve heard this spiel a couple times already. I’m getting used to it.”

“That not right.”

“It is what it is. Hopefully, you won’t have to wait too long.”

Kevin thought it was odd the coach had made reference to “someone” and not the manager. He still walked in the direction of the manager’s office. “Over there,” the hitting coach said, pointing to another door in the opposite direction of the manager’s office.

Kevin turned to walk to the conference room. It was not used for much. If the manager wanted to have a team meeting he would use the locker room. The conference room was too small to use for team meetings. Even press conferences were held in the locker room. The only use for the conference room was for players seeking privacy from the press or to have their own private conversations on their cell phones, away from the prying ears of others. It could also be used for a player to talk to a reporter for a one on one interview.

When Kevin opened the door Larvell Blanks was seated at the opposite end of a cardboard table that sat in the middle of the room. He was looking at his phone, reading through his email messages. His head bounced up when he saw the door fly open. Kevin closed the door softly and sat down in an aluminum fold up chair across from Larvell. He felt he would be more comfortable sitting in the manager’s office. The manager would be behind his desk, sitting in a leather chair that shifted and rotated back. The player was usually slumped in a beat up but comfortable couch. That is what Kevin was used to. Here he was with Larvell parked in two stiff, aluminum fold up chairs separated by a coffee stained cardboard table as if the two of them needed a deck of cards to play a game of poker.

Where Go the Astros

Sunday, September 22nd, 2013

For the third straight year the Astros appear to be heading towards the worst record in baseball.  This will give them the very first pick in the draft for the third year in a row.  The Nationals were able to snag Bryce Harper and Stephen Strasburg with their two years of futility.  The Astros selected Carlos Correa and Mark Appel with their selections.  It is still early to make an assessment whether these two players will make the same impact for the Astros as Harper and Strasburg have made for the Nationals.

Myworld watched all of the home spring training games for the Astros.  We got to see a lot of players win jobs on the major league team.  Many of those players are no longer on their roster, traded for younger players in their continued effort to build for the future.  Where have those players on the 40 man roster when spring training concluded go and who did the Astros get for them?

In February the Astros had sent Jed Lowrie and Fernando Rodriguez to the Athletics for Chris Carter, Brad Peacock and Max Stassi.  While Lowrie has done an excellent job playing shortstop for the Athletics, Carter led the Astros in homeruns and Peacock found himself in the starting rotation.  Stassi was called up in September.  To make up for having no shortstop ready for the major leagues the Astros signed Ronny Cedeno in late March after they realized Tyler Greene was not going to make it at shortstop.

The Astros released Tyler Greene and decided not to keep Rule V pick Nate Freiman.  The latter may turn out to be a mistake as Freiman was claimed by the Athletics and became a nice right handed bat to hit against left handed pitching.  Greene was signed by the White Sox, again designated for assignment and released by the White Sox and signed with the Braves.

April

The Astros traded again with the Athletics to pick up Travis Blackley to add to their porous pitching rotation, giving up outfielder Jake Goebbert.  Blackley would not last long with the team.  To accommodate Blackley on the roster the Astros had to designate Edgar Gonzalez for assignment and he was claimed by the Toronto Blue Jays.  The Astros would again resign Gonzalez in May after the Blue Jays released him. 

The Astos also designated Xavier Cedeno for assignment to make room on their roster for the promotion of Brandon Laird.  Cedeno would be claimed by the Washington Nationals where he has turned into a good lefthander out of the bullpen.

May

To accommodate continued additions to the 40 man roster as younger players were promoted to the major league team the Astros designated outfielders Rick Ankiel and Fernando Martinez off the 40 man roster.  Ankiel was released and Martinez was assigned to the Astros AAA team Oklahoma City Redhawks.  In June the Astros would trade Martinez to the Yankees for Charles Basford.

Philip Humber, who had pitched a no hitter for the White Sox the previous year and then couldn’t get anyone out after that was designated for assignment when he had trouble getting hitters out for the Astros when inserted into the starting rotation (7.86 ERA).  He was also sent to AAA.

June

The Astros designated Ross Seaton for assignment after they promoted outfielder Marc Krausse.  Ross would later be assigned to their AA Corpus Christi team.

July

The Astros designated shortstop Ronny Cedeno and first baseman Carlos Pena for assignment, giving the jobs to youngsters Jonathan Villar and Brett Wallace.  Both Cedeno and Pena would be released.

The Astros also traded their closer Jose Veras to the Tigers for outfielder Danry Vasquez.  Vazquez would be slotted as the Astros 16th top prospect by MLB.com.  A player to be named later was David Paulino.

The Astros would also tire of the injuries to Justin Maxwell, trading him to the Royals for Kyle Smith.  Kyle would be slotted as the 13th best prospect for the Astros according to mlb.com.  Brandon Barnes would take over the centerfield job.

Bud Norris would be traded to the Orioles for outfielder L.J. Hoes and lefthanded pitcher Josh Hader.  Hoes would be inserted into the starting left field slot for the Astros while Hader would be listed as the Astros 11th ranked prospect by mlb.com.

August

Travis Blackley did not work out and was designated for assignment.  He was sent to the Astros AAA team the Oklahoma City Redhawks.  They would a couple days later trade Travis to the Rangers for a player to be named later or cash. 

The Astros lost Wesley Wright off waivers to the Tampa Bay Rays.              

In an interesting transaction the Astros traded with the Diablos Rojas de Mexico of the Mexican League for rotund power hitting first baseman Japhet Amador and outfielder Leonardo Heras.  Amador was hitting .368 with 36 homeruns and a league leading 121 RBIs.  He could fill a spot at DH or play first base.  He stands 6′4″ 315 pounds but will only be 27 years old next year.  Heras is more of a prospect at 23 years of age.  He hit .310 with a .917 OPS.

September

Hector Ambriz was designated for assignment and later sent to AAA Oklahoma City.  Edgar Gonzalez was outrighted to AA Corpus Christi.  Arm injuries had put him on the 60 day disabled list.

So in all the moves they lost a few players that other teams found useful, but they also acquired three players that are considered good prospects that could influence the future of the Astros.  George Springer should be the first of their top ten prospects to arrive upon the major league scene in 2014 but Jonathan Singleton could also win the first base job out of spring training.  The future is bright for the Astros while the present may be bleak.    

San Marino Evens Italian Series

Sunday, September 22nd, 2013

After losing their first two games at home to start the series San Marino has taken two on the road against Rimini to even the series at two games apiece.  Yesterday they rode the seven plus shutout innings of Tiago da Silva to win 3-0.  Seth La Fera finished the shutout to pick up the save.

The San Marino offense was led by Joe Mazzuca, who ripped two doubles.  His first double in the second inning scored the first run for San Marino.  The second run of the inning scored on a ground out.  He also led off the eighth inning with a double and eventually scored on a fly ball.

Roberto Corradini pitched well for Rimini, giving up just four hits.  The two Mazzuca doubles proved to be his undoing.  He gave up three of the four hits in the second inning, then retired the next 17 San Marino hitters.  In the eighth a Mazzuca double and a walk ended his outing.

Rimini was able to get two men on in the eighth to bring the tying run to the plate, but they fell just short.  Rimini will try to salvage their last game at home to go to San Marino next weekend up in the series three games to two.

KBO Reaches 6 Million Fans

Sunday, September 22nd, 2013

Attendance is down in the KBO but they did reach 6 million fans.  Only the surprising LG Twins saw an increase in attendance when compared to last year.  The big drop was the disappointing Lotte Giants, who led the KBO in attendance last year with over 1.2 million fans but couldn’t come close to the 2 million mark this year, reaching only 700,000 plus. 

The KBO might not have met the 6 million mark if not for the 400,000 plus drawn by the expansion team NC Dinos.  Many of the owners against expansion feared that more teams would dilute the talent level resulting in a decrease in attendance.  Myworld thinks the KBO dropped the ball with their promotions.  After the retirement of Chan Ho Park and the movement of Hyun-Jin Ryu to the Los Angeles Dodgers in the major leagues, most of the baseball stories were focused on the results of Ryu and fellow Korean Shin-Soo Choo in the major leagues than the results in the KBO.

You can see the attendance figures here: http://www.mykbo.net/KBO_news