The rookie draft of professional baseball is a feast where not only club officials and reporters, but also young players who are full of excitement every year, their families who watch with their hearts, and fans who want to check the future of the club they support. However, the 2022 KBO New Draft held at the Blue Square Chaos Hall in Seoul on the 13th was not the same atmosphere as before as it was conducted as ‘untact’ due to the novel coronavirus infection (COVID-19). Still, the enthusiasm of each club to discover the new star on which the future of the club is held was transmitted through the small monitor screen.
The glory of the first overall pick in the 2022 KBO Draft was won by right-handed pitcher Park Joon-young (18 years old). Park Jun-young, who throws a fast ball of close to 150 km/h, was selected by Hanwha as the 1st pick in the first round, and was the first to be called out of 1006 players who participated in the draft. Park Joon-young is a pitcher. Hanwha embraced Moon Dong-ju (18, Gwangju Promotion High School), who is called the biggest high school pitcher as the first rookie nomination, and brought Park Joon-young to it, thus possessing abundant pitching prospects. Hanwha was able to nominate Park Jun-young, a player from the locality, in the first round of nomination, but according to the rule that ‘teams placed 8th to 10th in the previous year can make the first appointment regardless of their hometown’, they were able to select Dong-ju Moon. Hanwha General Manager Jung Min-cheol said, “Without a doubt, we chose Park Jun-young, who is the highest-level right-handed pitcher in the country.” “Moon Dong-ju and Park Jun-young are top-level right-handed pitchers. Maybe,” he expected.
SSG selected Gwangju Dongseong High School pitcher Shin Hyun-min as the second pick in the first round, followed by Samsung’s infielder Kim Young-woong, Lotte’s Seoul High School outfielder Jo Se-jin, and KIA Gangneung High School pitcher Choi Ji-min. In the first round, Kiwoom selected Bukil High School outfielder Park Chan-hyeok, LG selected Gyeongnam High School pitcher Kim Joo-wan, KT selected Yoo Shin-go pitcher Lee Sang-woo, Doosan selected Gunsan Commercial High School pitcher Kim Dong-jun, and NC selected Yulgok High pitcher Lee Jun-hyeok in the first round.
Meanwhile, right-handed pitcher Jin Seung-hyeon (Gyeongbuk High School), the son of KIA coach Jin Gap-yong, was selected by Lotte with the 4th pick in the second round. Outfielder Kwon Kwang-min (24), who signed a $1.2 million contract with the Chicago Cubs in 2015, was selected by Hanwha with the 41st overall pick in the 5th round and was able to play in the KBO League. Kim Seo-jin (17), an infielder who played for an independent team from the GED, was also thrilled to be selected as the 89th overall in the 9th round. On the 23rd of last month, Kiwoom drew attention by designating Seoul High School pitcher Joo Seung-bin, the younger brother of Sungkyunkwan University pitcher Joo Seung-woo, who made the first selection on the 23rd of last month, as the second 5th round, and the first team in history to appoint a brother.
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