MVP-winning pitchers, home run king among nominees for KBO’s 40th anniversary team

SEOUL-- The top South Korean baseball league on Wednesday unveiled candidates for its 40th anniversary team, with MVP-winning aces and the career home run king among those vying for 40 spots.

To commemorate its 40th anniversary this year, the Korea Baseball Organization (KBO) will unveil its "40 Legends" team, starting with the top four vote-getters at the All-Star Game on July 16.

The KBO released a list of 177 candidates that met the criteria established by the five-person selection committee. The KBO added that voting by an expert panel, accounting for 80 percent, and by fans, responsible for the remaining 20 percent, will determine members of the anniversary team.

The expert panel will be made up of KBO representatives, active KBO club general managers, managers, players and members of the media.

The experts' voting will run from May 23 to 31, while fan voting will take place from Wednesday to June 5 on the mobile application for Shinhan Bank, the title sponsor for the 2022 KBO season.

According to the KBO, all winners of Golden Gloves and Korean Series MVPs are automatically nominated. Players who met the following milestones were also shortlisted: 800 appearances, 100 wins, 150 saves and at least one 20-win season for pitchers; 2,000 games, 200 home runs, 2,000 hits and at least one 40-home run season for batters.

The KBO did not include active players, including ones plying their trade in foreign leagues.

Among the candidates are former Haitai Tigers pitcher Sun Dong-yol, who leads the all-time list with a 1.20 career ERA, and the late Lotte Giants ace Choi Dong-won, who famously won all four games in his team's Korean Series victory in 1984. On the hitting side, Lee Seung-yuop, the lifetime home run leader with 467, has been nominated.

After the four-highest vote earners are announced on July 16, the KBO will release four legends each week over the following 10 weeks.

Living members of the anniversary team will participate in a series of events for their previous clubs, including throwing out ceremonial first pitches. The KBO said it will produce commemorative merchandise for the anniversary team later this year.

Source: Yonhap News Agency