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Tuesday, February 23, 2021

Shin-Soo Choo heads to KBO for ‘21

Shin-Soo Choo is expected to join the SK Wyverns of the Korean Baseball Organization in 2021, according to multiple reports, including Tae Woo Kim of SPOTV.

Choo, 38, was a free agent this offseason after spending the past seven seasons with the Rangers. He posted a .236/.323/.400 slash line over 33 games in 2020.

An All-Star in 2018, Choo has racked up 218 homers and 157 stolen bases over a 16-year career. After beginning his career by appearing in 14 games over two seasons with the Mariners from 2005-06, Choo was traded to the Indians, where he spent the next seven years.

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: February 23, 2021 at 09:55 AM | 20 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: kbo, shin-soo choo

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   1. The Duke Posted: February 23, 2021 at 10:23 AM (#6006334)
Will he need a translator at 75k a year or does he remember enough to get by?
   2. Pat Rapper's Delight (as quoted on MLB Network) Posted: February 23, 2021 at 10:47 AM (#6006340)
Apparently Caesar's has the Rangers O/U at 69.5. If I were a betting man, I'd put it all on the under. Barring a miracle, this is a 110-loss team.
   3. CFBF's Results are Certified Posted: February 23, 2021 at 11:21 AM (#6006348)
I was interning in Cleveland for MLB.com in 2006 when Choo was traded to the Indians, and I was in the press gaggle for his introductory conversation with the media. Someone asked him if it was difficult to learn English (he spoke without a translator), and Choo shot back, "Have you ever tried to learn Korean?"

It was one of those athlete zingers that, objectively speaking, isn't that funny, but the media absolutely roared with laughter.
   4. Starring Bradley Scotchman as RMc Posted: February 23, 2021 at 12:30 PM (#6006365)
Shin-Soo Choo...God bless you.
   5. BDC Posted: February 23, 2021 at 01:05 PM (#6006380)
Rangers got 9 WAR for their $120M ... I guess the best you can say is that it could have been so much worse. Signing a guy longterm who is 31 and coming off a career year … well, it worked with Adrian Beltre but I can't imagine it works very often.

Choo worked really hard to keep himself in shape and has stayed an athletic all-round player into his late 30s. He is a real pro. He missed significant time in 2016, partly from back and leg conditions but partly too from getting his arm broken by a pitch in August (inevitably I was in the park that night, I seem to see more than my share of star-Ranger injuries). Otherwise he was a durable player, he was just in continual slow decline.
   6. vortex of dissipation Posted: February 23, 2021 at 01:59 PM (#6006393)
The all-time leader in Korean-born major-leagers in WAR, with 34.6 - Chan Ho Park is second with 19.9. Among position players, Jung Ho Kang is second at 5.5.

Korean-born players have hit 386 home runs. Choo has 218, 56% of them. Korean born players have 186 stolen bases. Choo has 157, 84% of them.
   7. RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: February 23, 2021 at 02:22 PM (#6006400)
Let us never forget that in space of four weeks, Bill Bavasi traded Asdrubal Cabrera and Shin Soo Choo away for two halves of a first base platoon (Eduardo Perez and Ben Broussard) that couldn't hit.
   8. Starring Bradley Scotchman as RMc Posted: February 23, 2021 at 03:05 PM (#6006407)
All-Koreans in MLB Team
-----------------------
1B - Hee-Seop Choi
2B - Rob Refsnyder (born Jung-Tae Kim)
3B - Jae-gyun Hwang
SS - Jung Ho Kang
LF - Ji-Man Choi
CF - Shin-Soo Choo
RF - Hyun Soo Kim
C - Cha-Seung Baek
DH - Dae-ho Lee
SP - Hyun Jin Ryu, Chan Ho Park, Jae Weong Seo
RP - Byung Hyung Kim

OK, Baek never caught in the majors; no Korean ever has. I picked him because he has the highest OPS among Korean pitchers in MLB.
   9. Never Give an Inge (Dave) Posted: February 23, 2021 at 03:27 PM (#6006410)
Choo had a nice career in MLB. For some reason I always assumed he had started out in KBO and then made the move to the US, but now I see that he actually came up through the Mariners organization and was just slow to become an everyday player for whatever reason, despite being a highly regarded prospect.
   10. Steve Parris, Je t'aime Posted: February 23, 2021 at 03:35 PM (#6006413)
Choo could really get on base and had a nice career as a result. Among active players, Choo was 2nd in HBP, 7th in walks, and 7th in times on base. In his one year in Cincinnati, Votto and Choo were 1-2 in OBP. I believe they're the only teammates this century to each get on base 300+ times in a season.
   11. SoSH U at work Posted: February 23, 2021 at 03:48 PM (#6006416)
OK, Baek never caught in the majors; no Korean ever has. I picked him because he has the highest OPS among Korean pitchers in MLB.


I think you could slot Hank Conger in there without anyone raising a fuss.
   12. Mayor Blomberg Posted: February 23, 2021 at 03:55 PM (#6006418)
was just slow to become an everyday player for whatever reason

His English? Not loud enough? He hit fine in the minors for Seattle.

I suppose blocked by Ibanez and Ichiro.
   13. jacksone (AKA It's OK...) Posted: February 23, 2021 at 04:14 PM (#6006420)
was just slow to become an everyday player for whatever reason



His English? Not loud enough? He hit fine in the minors for Seattle.

I suppose blocked by Ibanez and Ichiro.


Echoing the Mayor here - Is it really an issue if a 23 year old without a position to slot right into is left in the minors? Isn't that normal?
   14. Addie Joss Posted: February 23, 2021 at 04:25 PM (#6006422)
Now that we have gay marriage, if Shin Soo Choo had married a certain 1960s era Mets' catcher, we could have had Choo Choo Choo.
   15. Starring Bradley Scotchman as RMc Posted: February 23, 2021 at 04:45 PM (#6006423)
Re 14: "He's named Mr. Choo...and he likes me!"
   16. RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: February 23, 2021 at 04:50 PM (#6006425)
we could have had Choo Choo Choo.


In Korea, they put the surname first, so it would be Choo Choo Choo there.
   17. reech Posted: February 23, 2021 at 05:26 PM (#6006431)
He apparently was a very popular clubhouse guy. He also helped the minor league players financially when the rug was pulled out from the minors during plague year 1.
https://www.dallasnews.com/sports/rangers/2020/04/01/shin-soo-choo-donates-1000-to-each-rangers-minor-league-player/
   18. Never Give an Inge (Dave) Posted: February 23, 2021 at 05:31 PM (#6006433)
Echoing the Mayor here - Is it really an issue if a 23 year old without a position to slot right into is left in the minors? Isn't that normal?

It’s not an issue; I was merely explaining why I assumed he had played overseas initially — I wasn’t aware of his time in Seattle and he first crossed my radar screen when he had his first significant playing time at age 25 and his first full season at age 26. I wasn’t questioning the reasons, but it was a relatively late start for a guy with his talent.
   19. Bourbon Samurai stays in the fight Posted: February 23, 2021 at 05:47 PM (#6006437)
He's a big big deal in Korea. One of my first trips to Seoul, I flipped on the TV in my hotel room and the sports channel was running every single one of atbats from the most recent season, all 600 or so of them, one after another.
   20. McCoy Posted: February 23, 2021 at 05:53 PM (#6006438)
Wade Boggs.

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