Japan responded unexpectedly to the dropout of the ‘Golden Glove pitcher’ An Woo-jin (24, Kiwoom) from the 2023 World Baseball Classic (WBC) national team. 스포츠토토

The Korea Baseball Organization (KBO) held a technical committee at KBO headquarters in Gangnam-gu, Seoul on the 4th and confirmed 30 entries to participate in the 2023 WBC.

As a pitcher, a large number of young pitchers such as Kim Yun-shik (LG), Sohn Joon-jun, (KT), and Lee Eui-ri (KIA), including Go Woo-seok, the king of saves in the 2022 season, were on board. Veteran Kim Gwang-hyun (SSG) and Yang Hyeon-jong (KIA) were also listed on the entry list without any change.

The boarding of Ahn Woo-jin, who is facing a controversy over school violence, was ultimately unsuccessful. An Woo-jin played an MVP-level performance last year, ranking first in ERA and strikeouts. Looking at his skills alone, he is a player who can be selected for the national team.

However, controversy over school violence got in the way. Ahn Woo-jin has been stripped of his national team qualifications from the Korea Sports Association and the Korea Baseball Softball Association because he used violence against his juniors while he was in Whimoon High School. At least the WBC organized by the KBO is a tournament where he can play as a national representative, but he did not get on board.

Regarding the exclusion of Ahn Woo-jin, Technical Committee Chairman Cho Beom-hyun, who attended the entry announcement press conference, said, “Skills are important, but we considered the symbolic meaning, responsibility, and pride of the national team representing the country.” But (if not), I plan to go with the current 30 members.” In fact, it was said that there was no possibility of an additional selection of An Woo-jin.

When the news of Ahn Woo-jin’s elimination was reported, the Japanese media also expressed a lot of interest. Japan previously expressed its wariness, saying, “Korea is preparing the strongest power ever,” and the reaction was surprising that the KBO’s best pitcher, An Woo-jin, was eliminated.

Japanese media ‘The Digest’ said, “Among the 30 members of the Korean national team, An Woo-jin, who is considered the best pitcher in the KBO, was not selected, which caused a considerable stir.” “he said.

The media explained, “I wonder what the exclusion of An Woo-jin from the national team, which is evaluated as Korea’s Jacob deGrom (Texas), will mean,” and “the result of cold public opinion and morality taking precedence.”

Another media ‘Baseball King’ also said, “Ahn Woo-jin, who has been called the best pitcher in the KBO, was excluded from the national team because the issue of violence in high school caused controversy.” It will be delayed,” he said.