For Choi Ji-man (32), it is the winter of anger. 바카라 Nothing worked out as intended. And the ‘preliminary free agent’ season begins.
Choi Ji-man was traded from the Tampa Bay Rays to the Pittsburgh Pirates in November of last year (hereafter Korean time). He underwent surgery to remove a bone fragment in his elbow to prepare for the 2023 season. In particular, because of the World Baseball Classic (WBC) international competition, Choi Ji-man’s winter clock turned quickly.
Rehabilitation was a short surgery that took about 2-3 months, so it was calculated that he could join the national team after surgery and rehabilitation.
However, the Pittsburgh team did not allow Choi Ji-man to participate in the WBC. It was because he was concerned about the condition of Choi Ji-man’s elbow. Pittsburgh is evaluating Carlos Santana as a starting resource who is expected to alternate between first baseman and designated hitter. The concerns of the Pittsburgh club were perhaps natural.
General manager Ben Sherrington said, “As the season approaches, my physical condition improves. While he was rehabbing in Arizona, club staff looked after him. He’s on the right track now, but this offseason was different. There was also this part when talking about the WBC,” he said. “When the decision was made, it was not clear whether I was completely ready. We had a conversation with our concerns. But I expect it to be complete by the end of the season.” The underlying judgment was that participation in the WBC could interfere with the season in normal condition.
Choi Ji-man immediately objected. Regarding the club’s decision to oppose participating in the WBC, the agency said, “All athletes would have dreamed of running as a player representing the country with a national flag on their chest. This time, he was overjoyed when he was included in the WBC national team reserve list. But maybe it’s because I had high expectations? The disappointment and frustration caused by the decision to not be accepted is also very great.” As well as joining the national team scheduled for the middle of this month, I was improving my physical condition in line with the schedule for the first round in Tokyo, so the disappointment I feel is so great and painful,” he directly expressed his disappointment at the club’s decision.
But here again an uncomfortable situation was created with the club. It was Choi Ji-man and Pittsburgh, who were in the process of adjusting the salary, and Choi only lost in the end. For this year’s annual salary, Choi Ji-man requested 5.4 million dollars, and Pittsburgh set an annual salary of 4.65 million dollars, but an agreement was not reached. In the end, I went to the hearing and finally raised Pittsburgh’s hand.
Last year, he played 113 games for Tampa Bay, recording a batting average of .233 (83 hits in 356 at-bats), 11 homers, 52 RBIs, and an OPS of .729. Missing 49 games, including being on the injured list due to pain in his right elbow, seems to have worked against Choi Ji-man at the hearing.
I got rid of the elbow pain that I was holding for a while. Choi Ji-man personally regrets it, but as a result, he can only focus on the regular season by not participating in the WBC. Above all, Choi Ji-man gets a free agent (FA) qualification this year. It has become a situation where you can aim for the FA jackpot.
For Choi Ji-man, everything is unsolved in the winter. Depending on the gaze, it can also be seen as ‘winter of anger’. For Choi Ji-man, these circumstances can act as motivation.
Choo Shin-soo (SSG), who belonged to the Cincinnati Reds in 2013, is also Choi Ji-man, who was absent from the WBC right before the FA season. As a result, Choo Shin-soo did not suffer any known injuries, but instead of WBC, he focused on the regular season and later hit the Texas and $130 million free agent jackpot in 7 years.
It is impossible to put the situation and background on the same line as Shin-soo Choo, but it has become a situation where Ji-man Choi can take a step closer to the goal of becoming a FA jackpot.