Tommy Edman (28, St. Louis Cardinals) is the first ‘foreigner’ in Korean baseball history to wear the Taegeuk mark and compete in an international competition.
A native of California, USA, Edmund’s nationality is American, but his mother is a Korean-American, so he got on the Korean baseball team thanks to the WBC’s loose nationality application.
He is a so-called ‘Korean American (Korea + American) person’.
Edman, who boasts the best second baseman defense in the American Professional Baseball Major League (MLB), said in an interview with Yonhap News, “My Korean skills aren’t that good. I’m trying to learn,” he said.
The only one in the 30-man WBC final entry who does not speak Korean, he expects to reunite with Kim Gwang-hyun (35, SSG Landers), who played together until 2021.
Edman, who called Kim Kwang-hyun by his nickname at the time, ‘KK’, said, “I liked playing with him. He was a fun and energetic player, and he seemed excited every time he went on the mound.” I look forward to resuming the course this time. I will get a lot of help to adapt.”
He also has a relationship with Choi Ji-man (32, Pittsburgh Pirates).
Last year, when Choi Ji-man belonged to the Tampa Bay Rays, Edmund succeeded in getting on base against Tampa Bay and met first baseman Choi Ji-man.
“We talked for a while at first base, and it was really fun,” recalled Edman.
It was last summer that Edmon realized that he could play for the Korean national team.
At the time, the Korea Baseball Organization (KBO) secretariat contacted Korean players in the major leagues in turn to seek out their intention to participate in the WBC in order to build the best power.
Edmund said, “His mother has a Korean passport, which allowed me to join the Korean national team. I am delighted to have been selected for the final entry after going through several processes.”
Edman’s full name is Thomas ‘Hyeonsu’ Edman.
He added a Korean name to his middle name in the hope that he would not forget his roots.
Edman said, “My parents were happy to be selected for the WBC Korean national team. It’s because I can represent Korea. I’m excited to play with my Korean colleagues and meet great players.”
With the addition of Edmund, the Korean national baseball team has the best defensive keystone combination among participating countries.
Edmund, whose main position is second base, won the Gold Glove for two consecutive years in the MLB given to the best defender at each position.
In addition, shortstop Kim Ha-seong (28, San Diego Padres) was the first Asian infielder to be named among the three finalists for the Gold Glove.
Edman said, “He’s a really good defender. I’m happy to work with Kim Ha-seong,” and added, “I think it would be fun to collaborate on a double play. I’m sure the (keystone combination) will be at the highest level among the WBC participating countries.”
Edmund’s ability is focused on defense, but as a switch hitter who can handle both at-bats, he is also excellent at batting and running base.메이저놀이터
In 2019, the first year of his debut, he played an active role with a batting average of 0.304, 11 home runs and 15 stolen bases, and this year, with a batting average of 0.265, 13 home runs and 32 stolen bases, he became the first batter in St. Louis.
Edmund said, “In the national team, I will focus on getting on base for the center hitter. I am also confident in stealing the base. I want to score a lot of runs for Korea.”
Another thing Edman expects from the WBC is the Korea-Japan match.
Edmund, who belongs to St. Louis, has played many rivalries with the Chicago Cubs, a member of the National League Central Division, but this is his first national match.
South Korea will face Japan in the first round of the WBC on March 10 at the Tokyo Dome in Japan.
Edman said, “It’s fun just to play against a fierce rivalry. I’m sure you’ll understand (the weight of the match against Korea and Japan) much better if you actually play in the game.” It will be full of energy.”
Outfielder Lars Nutba (26), a teammate of St. Louis, a player of Japanese descent, joined the Japanese national team this time.
Edman, who staked the ‘right to tease all year round’ against Korea and Japan, said, “It’s a fun experience for us, good friends, to meet as opponents. (If we win the match against Japan and Korea), we’ll tease them throughout the season.”
Korean baseball, which has recently been in crisis due to poor performance in international competitions, wants to use this WBC as a springboard for a new leap forward.
It can be a bit of a burden for Edmon, who will be a member of Korean baseball for the first time this time.
However, he said, “I want to be one of the players who help Korea get out of the crisis and advance to the semifinals,” he said.