Hwang Jun-seo (Jangchung High School senior),안전놀이터 who was selected first overall in the rookie draft and is likely to go to the Hanwha Eagles, left a disappointing result in the match against Taiwan at the Baseball World Cup. As a result, the Korean national team experienced the pain of losing in the first game of the tournament.
Jun-seo Hwang started the 2023 WBSC World Youth Baseball Championship (U-18) Baseball World Cup preliminary round match against Taiwan in Taichung, Taiwan on the 2nd (Korean time) and pitched 56 pitches in 2⅓ innings, allowing 5 hits, 3 walks, and 3 strikeouts. Recorded 4 runs (3 earned runs).
The U-18 national team, led by coach Lee Young-bok, began strengthening training in Korea on the 21st of last month, played a practice game against Korea-Japan Jangsin University and Wonkwang University, and then departed for Taiwan on the 30th to win its sixth championship. Korea, in Group A with Taiwan, Australia, Puerto Rico, Mexico, and the Czech Republic, was scheduled to have its first preliminary match against Puerto Rico the previous day (the 1st), but was unable to play due to rain, and will face Taiwan on the 2nd.
On this day, it was Hwang Jun-seo who took on the important responsibility of selection. Hwang Jun-seo began to stand out in 2021, when he was a freshman in high school, with 1 win and an ERA of 1.42 in 4 games. In 2022, he pitched in 12 games and recorded 2 wins, 2 losses, and an ERA of 1.84. This year, he also recorded 6 wins and 2 losses in 15 games. He left an average ERA of 2.16. Currently, he is a pitcher who is highly likely to be selected by the Hanwha Eagles as the first overall pick in the 2024 rookie draft, which will be held on the 14th. But his start in international competition was disappointing.
Hwang Jun-seo caught leadoff hitter Lee Chia-wei with a grounder in the third inning, finally catching the leadoff hitter. However, he started to shake again when he gave Wang Nianhao a ball that hit his body, and gave a walk to the follow-up batter, inviting a crisis. After getting two timely hits, he passed the baton to Kim Taek-yeon (Incheon High School senior) and went down the mound. Kim Taek-yeon also allowed a timely hit and was unable to prevent the runner in charge sent by Hwang Jun-seo from scoring, increasing Hwang Jun-seo’s run loss to 4 points.
On this day, except for the first inning, the U-18 Korean national team did not show much strength against the Taiwan mound. In the first inning, Korea’s leadoff hitter Park Si-hyun (Gyeonggi Commercial High School senior) got on base due to an error by the opponent’s right fielder and stepped on second base, giving them a chance to score. Afterwards, Yeo Dong-gun (Seoul High School senior) scored the first run on a sacrifice bunt by Lee Chung-hyun (Chungam High School senior) with one out and runners on third base, succeeding in taking the lead. However, what was disappointing was that the opponent’s catcher’s fastball resulted in a runner on second base with one out, but it did not lead to an additional score.
The scoreless streak continued after the first inning. Korea was unable to score any runs with 2 outs and runners on second base and 1 outs and runners on base in the 3rd inning due to a bunt hit by Lee Sang-jun (Gyeonggi High School senior) in the top of the 2nd inning, and in the top of the 4th and 5th inning, Taiwan’s starting pitcher Lin Wei-en pitched two innings in a row. It was tied up as a ‘three-way crime’. And in the top of the 6th inning with one out and 2nd and 3rd bases on base, there was no solution, with Cho Hyun-min (Chungam High School senior) striking out and Lee Seung-min retiring with a fly ball to left field.
In Korea, Kim Taek-yeon, who took over the mound from Hwang Jun-seo, allowed one run on defense in the bottom of the 4th inning, widening the gap to 1-5, and Jeon Mir (senior, Gyeongbuk High School), who took the mound in the bottom of the 6th, gave up one more run, making it 1-6 for Taiwan. lost to