Players' Threats Convince The KBO To Reconsider Adding A 10th Team
The Korea Baseball Organization's BOD will review information "regarding the establishment of a 10th team" that has recently been denied, according to Robert Lee of the KOREA HERALD. The previous ruling "to postpone the discussion" by the governing body came on June 19. The decision to reconsider is thought to be a result of the "increasing pressure of fans, local governments and players." The Korea Professional Baseball Players Association had announced that its players would boycott the All-Star Game and World Baseball Classic. KBO Secretary General Yang Hae-young said, "The club heads agreed that it is not appropriate to show fans a negative image, and that we must continue to hold the All-Star Games." In an effort to "promote the sport within the country and widen the talent pool," the board also decided to fund the creation of clubs at elementary, middle and high school levels. The KBO will provide up to 30M won ($26,000) to new elementary school teams, 150M won ($131,000) for middle school teams and 400M won ($350,000) for high school teams over the course of three years (KOREA HERALD, 7/10). In Seoul, Moon Gwang-lip reported Yang will meet with the players "to try to resolve the boycott issue" ahead of the All-Star Game this month. Current regulations state that players who are selected as All-Stars but refuse to play are subject to a 10-game suspension at the start of the second half of the season. The KBO has said that it "would have no other choice but to apply the regulation." The KPBPA has responded by threatening to boycott all games for the rest of the season" if suspended (KOREA JOONGANG DAILY, 7/11).