Even if it doesn’t work out, it won’t work out too much. This is the story of Park Hyo-jun (27, Atlanta Braves), a 9-year-old American who is going through a season of trials.
Atlanta announced on the 6th (Korean time), “We are transferring Park Hyo-joon to our minor league Triple-A team, the Gwynnett Strippers.” Park Hyo-joon was excluded from the 40-man roster on the 29th of last month and received DFA (designation for transfer). After that, he had to accept a move to the minor leagues after not finding a new team for a week.
After graduating from Yatap High School, Park Hyo-joon challenged the American baseball team in 2015. This is my 9th year in the US. After making his big league debut in the 2021 season, he also joined the entry for the first opening game of his life last year and enjoyed the honor of starting and recording hits.
However, within a year the situation changed. It was suddenly a season of trials. In this offseason alone, a particularly cold winter continues, with three DFAs and two transfers.
It started in November of last year. Park Hyo-jun was traded to the Boston Red Sox after receiving DFA from the Pittsburgh Pirates. He even briefly promised to make a fresh start in the new team, and was notified of the nomination for transfer once again in three weeks. He found a new home with the Atlanta Braves, but was again subject to DFA.
As he failed to secure a place in the major leagues, the Taegeuk mark, which he had long dreamed of, was also in vain. Park Hyo-jun was listed on the 2023 World Baseball Classic (WBC) list of 50 people to watch. In his adult stage, he wore the national team uniform for the first time in his life and dreamed of a keystone combination with Kim Ha-seong (28, San Diego Padres), a year senior at Yatap High School, but was eliminated from the final entry.
At the time, Cho Beom-hyeon, technical committee chairman, explained the reason, saying, “Park Hyo-joon is currently without a team 메이저놀이터. That’s why it was a dimension to utilize young domestic players.”
Park Hyo-joon is expected to work hard for a major league call-up from Triple A. Attention is focusing on whether he will be able to overcome his ordeal by showing his still competitive edge in the United States.
◆Park Hyo-joon ML career record
68 games, batting average 0.201 (36 hits in 179 at-bats), 5 home runs, 20 RBIs, OPS 0.637