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“Now that you’re up, let me tell you something.”
KT Wiz's fan festival was held at Seonseunggwan, Kyunghee University International Campus, Yongin, Gyeonggi-do on the 26th. While fans asked various questions to the players, veteran infielder Park Byung-ho also received questions. It was a light question, ‘Why do you put tape under your eyes?’ Park Byeong-ho, who took the microphone, answered the fan's questions with sincerity and then said, "I'll tell you something." It was a ‘confession’ that had nothing to do with questions.
Park Byeong-ho said, “Actually, I was heartbroken after the Korean Series (KS) ended. “I was so disappointed that I couldn’t look up to the players or fans,” he said, blaming himself. He said, “After coming to KT, I entered KS for the first time and played for the championship, but I was disappointed because I did not win,” and promised, “I will prepare well this winter so that I can wear the championship ring and share happiness with the fans.”
Byung-ho Park bowed his head with 2 hits (1 home run) and 8 strikeouts in 18 at-bats in 5 games in the 2023 KS. He, who boasts the best first base defense in the KBO League, saved face by recording two errors. Park Byung-ho, who wore the KT uniform to win the championship in 2022, performed poorly in KS, his first appearance after transferring. In the end, he was unable to resolve the burden of winning, which had continued for 19 years since his professional debut.
The feelings of regret and regret continued even 15 days after KS ended. Park Byung-ho, who expressed his regret in front of 2,500 fans, continued his attitude of self-reflection at the KBO awards ceremony held the next day (27th). When he went up to the podium to receive the first baseman defense award, he blamed himself again, saying, “The team went from last place to KS, but I think I fell short.”
The same was true in the interview after the awards ceremony. Park Byeong-ho, who said he had a sleepless night after KS, said, “It’s been a while since the season ended, but I still have a lot of regret. I think the results of KS would have changed if I had played an active role. It's a pity that KS has nothing to show and is left with nothing but emptiness. “I want to turn back time,” he reflected.
Three reflections expressed in front of fans and media. Park Byung-ho must have spent more time reflecting. Teammates who watched him next to him expressed their sad feelings about him. KT captain Park Kyung-soo said, “It is not an individual’s responsibility. He said, "We all fell short," and Woo Gyu-min, who went from being a former LG Twins teammate to a new KT teammate, is also said to have worried, saying, "I hope Byung-ho Park doesn't take responsibility (for failing to win the championship) on his own."
But Byung-ho Park did not stop his reflection. He said, “I’m grateful for the stories people around me tell me, but I can’t help it (continuing to reflect). Any player who plays a pivotal role on a team must feel this sense of responsibility. “I think I feel this way more because I occupy a large part of the team,” he said.
Rather than just being frustrated, I strengthened my resolve to bounce back. Park Byeong-ho said, “I suffered from minor injuries during the regular season and my performance was not good. “I will work hard to get in shape over the winter so that I can play consistently at at least 80% fitness level next year,” he said. “I don’t think I will be able to spend this offseason happily.” It is a winter that requires reflection. “I will work hard to prepare for next season with new goals,” he pledged.
Thursday, November 30, 2023
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