Thursday, December 21, 2017

Where are they now? Doosan Bears Team Set

In 2016 Super Star Baseball cards released two team sets. The team sets were from the two teams (Doosan Bears & Samsung Lions) that played in the 2015 Korean Series. Now that I am getting back to this blog again, I thought I would do a post to talk about where the players from the Doosan Bears team set are currently at in the KBO or elsewhere.

But before I do that, here is a quick breakdown of what comes in the box.

Each box has 45 cards + 1 poster
- 2 Super Star Cards
- 3 Big Star Cards
- 3 All Star Cards
- 36 Normal Cards
- 1 Super Stick Card (10 subjects)

There are hit chances that include 5 Super Piece/Patch subjects and 6 Super Auto subjects

Since the release of this set, some players have found themselves in the uniforms of other teams, some of them have found themselves in non-player roles, and some of the younger players are still with the team and hoping to take on a bigger role with Doosan in the upcoming season.

Oh Jae-won (#SBC16DO-001-SS) had a strong season in 2016 and played in the 2016 All-Star game and he also played on the 2017 WBC team for Korea, but he had some major struggles throughout the 2017 KBO regular season. He spent a lot of time alternating with Choi Joo Hwan at 2nd base this year. He is still with the Bears and hoping for a more successful season in 2018.

Kim Jae-ho (#SBC16DO-002-SS) started off 2017 playing for Korea in the WBC. During the regular season he took his role at shortstop and was having another good year for the Bears until he was sidelined later in the season after injuring his shoulder while making a catch. He was able to recover and come back in late in the season, but he wasn't quiet the same. He is still with Doosan and looking for a strong return for 2018.

Hong Sung-heon (#SBC16DO-003-BS) began his career with the Doosan Bears in 1999 and spent most of his career in a Bears uniform with the exception of a few years with the Lotte Giants (2009-2012). At the end of the 2016 season he announced his retirement as a player and his retirement ceremony was held on April 30, 2017.  He joined the San Diego Padres coaching staff in 2017 and is still currently with them.

Min Byung-hun (#SBC16DO-004-BS) announced his free agency at the start of the 2017 season. He begin his career in 2006 with the Doosan Bears and had spent his whole career with them (except during military service with the Police Futures League Team) but starting in 2018 he will be wearing a different uniform. In November of 2017, he signed a 4-year 8 billion KRW contract with the Lotte Giants.

Jang Won-jun (#SBC16DO-005-BS) started his professional career in 2004 wearing Lotte Giant orange. He remained with them until joining the Doosan Bears in 2015. Since being with the bears he has 2 Korean Series Championships to his name and he was also a member of the 2017 WBC team. He will still be wearing a Dooosan uniform for 2018 and will remain one of the key starting pitchers for the Bears.

Jung Soo-bin (#SBC16DO-006-AS) started his career with the Doosan Bears in 2009. In 2015 he was named the MVP of the Korean Series in which the Doosan Bears defeated the Samsung Lions and claimed their 4th championship. In 2017 he began is military service and is currently with the Korean Police Futures League team. He should be returning to Doosan after the 2018 season.

Ko Young-min (#SBC16DO-007-AS) started his career with the Doosan Bears in 2002 and remained with them until his retirement as a player after the 2016 season. Because of his speed on the bases for the Bears, he will always be known by his nickname "Go Jet." In 2017 he moved to the kt Wiz as a coach.

Yoo Hee-kwan (#SBC16DO-008-AS) may be know around the world and the KBO for his fastball speeds that only average 79 mph, but he has been a key pitcher in the Doosan starting rotation over the years due to his control and mix of pitches. He started his career in 2009 with the Bears and will continue wearing the Doosan uniform in the 2018 season.

Noh Kyung-eun (#SBC16DO-009-N) began playing in the KBO in 2003 in a Bears uniform. In 2016 he found himself putting on Lotte Giants uniform after being traded in the middle of the season.

Lee Hyun-seung (#SBC16DO-010-N) started his KBO career with the Hyundai Unicorns in 2006. The Unicorns were taken over in 2008 by the Heroes and became the Woori Heroes (currently Nexen Heroes). In 2010 he joined the Doosan Bears and has remained with them ever since.

Yoon Myung-june (#SBC16DO-011-N) began his KBO career as a relief pitcher with the Doosan Bears in 2012. He was in a Bears uniform through 2016 and in 2017 he began his military service. He is currently playing with the Sangmu (Army) Futures League team and is expected to be back in 2019.

Oh Hyoun-taek (SBC16DO-012-N) started his professional career with the Bears in 2008. He was Doosan through the 2017 season, but at the end of the season he was put into he KBO Secondary Draft and was picked up in the 3rd round by the Lotte Giants. For the 2018 season he will be wearing Lotte orange like several of his teammates from the time that this set was made.

Chung Jae-hun (#SBC16DO-013-N) started in the KBO in 2003 with the Doosan Bears. He played for the Bears until 2015 when he went to Lotte for 1 season. In 2016 he rejoined the bears. On August 3, 2016 he was hit on his throwing arm by a line drive off the bat of Park Yong-taek (LG Twins). Everyone thought it was just be a bruise but after further examination it ended up being a career ending fracture. He was still with Doosan in 2017, but he didn't make any appearances due to surgery and recovery. At the end of the 2017 season he announced that he is retiring as a player, but he will continue to wear a Bears uniform as a coach for the futures league team in 2018.

Kim Kang-ryul (SBC16DO-014-N) has been with the Doosan Bears since 2008. The 2017 season saw him have his best season of his career as a go to guy out of the bullpen for the Bears. He also provided some excitement during a game against the SK Wyverns on August 22, 2017 when he was put in as a batter and hit an RBI single. He will be back in a Bears uniform for 2018.

 Ham Deok-ju (#SBC16DO-015-N) began playing with the Bears in 2013. He has mostly been coming out of the bullpen, but in 2017 he moved into a mixed role as a starter and reliever due to injuries in the starting rotation. He has shown a lot of promise at the age of 22. He is likely to move into a regular starting role once he has a bit more experience under his belt. He is still with the Bears.

Lee Hyun-ho (#SBC16DO-016-N) started pitching for Doosan in 2011. He is a reliever that spends most of his time rotating between the Doosan Bears 1st team and the Bears 2nd team in the futures league. He will be back with the Bears in 2018.

Nam Kyung-ho (#SBC16DO-017-N) signed with Doosan in the 1st round in 2015. He pitched 9 innings across 5 games that year and hasn't made an appearance in a game with the 1st team since then. He is still with the Bears in their Futures League system. Will he be making his way back with the 1st team for 2018?

Oh Jang-hoon (#SBC16DO-018-N) started with Lotte in 2008. He was picked up by the Bears in 2011 in the secondary draft. He is a bit of a mystery because he never really got any playing time in the KBO top league. He was a 1st baseman that was "converted" to a pitcher in 2015. He appeared in 1 game for 1 inning against the NC Dinos on September 3, 2015. He gave 1 hit, 1 walk, and had 2 strikeouts. In 2016 he left the league and returned to Jeju Island to help on the family farm.

Jang Min-ik (#SBC16DO-019-N) came to the Bears in 2010 as the 7th pick of the 1st round of the draft. His appearances with the Doosan 1st team have been sparse at best. He has appeared in 28 games with them (3 in 2017) and spends most of his time toiling away in the Futures League. He still wears a Doosan uniform.

Sung Yung-hoon (#SBC16DO-020-N) is yet another of those perennial Futures League players that make up part of this team set. He was taken by Doosan in the 2009 draft. In his career he has made 25 appearances with the 1st team (1 in 2017). He looks to be back in the Bears uniform for 2018, but still in the Futures League unless something changes.

Kim Myung-sung (#SBC16DO-021-N) was taken in the 1st draft (5th overall) by the Lotte Giants in 2011. He had a lackluster career in the KBO, but he was a member of several Korean teams that played internationally in tournaments in 2009 and 2010. He made his way over to the Doosan Bears in 2012 where he remained until October 2016 when he was released and not picked back up.

Huh Jun-heok (#SBC16DO-022-N) was drafted in 2009 by the Lotte Giants. He spent 2010 and 2011 with the Giants and 2012 and 2013 with the SK Wyverns. In 2014 he went to the Doosan Bears. He made 52 appearances with the Bears during his time there. In 2017 he started his military service with the Sangmu (Army) Futures League team and is expected to be back for 2019.

Cho Seung-soo (#SBC16DO-023-N) was picked up in 2009 by the Doosan Bears in the draft. He has been in and out of the Futures League over his career with Doosan. In 2017 he made 1 appearance with the 1st team. He is still with the Bears.

Lee Won-jae (#SBC16DO-024-N) came into the KBO with Doosan in 2007 with a lot of promise as a potential starting pitcher. After several years of injuries and unimpressive stats, he continues to find himself in a Doosan uniform playing for the Bears in the Futures League.

Jin Ya-gob (#SBC16DO-025-N) was taken by Doosan in 2008 in the 1st round. He had some good runs and showed a lot of promise as a left handed reliever for the Bears. However, his career was sidelined in 2016 when he was found out to have been involved in illegal sports betting. He received a suspension of 20 games, 20 million won fine, and 120 hours of community service. He entered no games during the 2017 season because of this and it's unclear as to when and if he will be back with Doosan.

Chae Ji-sun (#SBC16DO-026-N) became a member of the Doosan Bears during the 2015 draft. He made appearances with the Futures League team in 2015 and 2016. After 2016 he began serving his military service.

Yang Eui-ji (#SBC16DO-027-N) is the glue that keeps it all together for Doosan from behind the plate. He was drafted by Doosan in 2006 and beginning in 2010 he became a vital part of the team by taking on a full time role as catcher. In the last 8 years he has made an appearance in 930 games for Doosan and most of them have been behind the plate. In 2017 he had a bit of a down year offensively after some struggles with hitting and an injury to his hand after being hit by a pitch while batting. At the end of 2018 he will be a free agent. Will Doosan be able to keep him around after next season?

Choi Jae-hoon (#SBC16DO-028-N) got his KBO start with Doosan in 2008. He was with the Bears from 2008 through 2016 and played the role of back up catcher most of the time. In 2017 he went from Doosan to the Hanhwa Eagles where he saw action in 104 games for them.

Choi Joo-hwan (#SBC16DO-029-N) made his first appearance in the KBO with Doosan in 2006. He has been a nice utility player (primarily 2nd baseman) for Doosan over the years and in 2017 he appeared in the largest number of games in his career as a 2nd baseman taking over for a struggling Oh Jae-won. He is still with Doosan and the 2018 season will be an interesting year. Will he remain as the primary starter at 2nd base or will Oh Jae-won find his form again and reclaim the spot?

Hur Kyoung-min (#SBC16DO-030-N) was drafted by Doosan in 2009 and has been their primary 3rd baseman of the last few years. He has been relatively solid at the position but back injuries and slumping production have been of concern recently. After the end of 2017, Doosan has been looking for another player that can share the role at 3rd base with him. A little fun fact about Kyoung-min is his nickname, "Mimi."

Oh Jae-il (#SBC16DO-031-N) was taken by the Hyundai Unicorns (later became the Heroes) in the 2005 draft. In 2012 he came to Doosan. Between 2012 and 2015 he spent a lot of his time going back and forth between the 1st team and the Futures League team. In 2016 he really stepped up to the plate and filled the role of 1st baseman for the Bears. In the last 2 seasons he has played in 233 games, averaged 0.311, and hit 53 HRs. For anybody that has followed the charity work that I have done with my friends of the past season, he (and his walk out song) were the inspiration for the name of our group, Team Jokbal.

Kim Jae-hwan (#SBC16DO-032-N) was drafted by the Doosan Bears in 2008 and started his career as a catcher. He later converted to an outfielder and he had his breakout year with Doosan in 2016. Over the last 2 years he has belted 72 HRs for the Bears. In case you are wondering, he is my favorite player on the team and there are a couple of reasons. First, was born in the countryside area where I have been working since coming to Korea. Second, I just love to see his swing. It's a thing of beauty in my eyes.

Ryu Ji-hyuk (#SBC16DO-033-N) was drafted by the Bears in 2012 in the 4th round. Since 2016 he has been a solid back up at shortstop for Doosan and he saw the most action of his career in 2017 after starting shortstop Kim Jae-ho went out with a shoulder injury. While Doosan is looking for Kim Jae-ho to come back in 2018 in peak form, there is still a lot of room and playing time in Ryu's future with the Bears.

Yoo Min-sang(#SBC16DO-34-N), like Ryu Ji-hyuk, was drafted by the Bears in 2012. He made his first appearance in the top KBO league in 2015 with Doosan. In 2016 he landed with the kt Wiz and has remained there for 2 seasons. Starting in 2018 he will be wearing a KIA Tigers uniform after being taken in the KBO Secondary Draft this year. An interesting little life fact about Yoo is that he attended elementary school in America.

Seo Ye-il (#SBC16DO-035-N) is an infielder that was taken by the bears in the 2016 draft. He has spent most of his 1st two years developing in the Futures League with the 2nd team, but he has also made appearances in 53 games with the 1st team over the last couple of seasons. Doosan is hoping for Seo to have a bright future with them.

Park Kun-woo (#SBC16DO-036-N) got his first KBO start with Doosan in 2009. From that time until 2015 he spent a lot of his time developing in the Futures League and completing his military service with the Police Baseball team. Since 2015, Park has been at the plate 1125 times and has averaged 0.347 over those at-bats. He has been in the top 10 for the batting title for the last 2 years. He has also hit 20 HRs in each of the last 2 seasons while being solid defensively in center. He will be back in 2018 looking to challenge for the batting title once again.

Jung Jin-ho (#SBC16DO-037-N) started playing with the Doosan Bears in 2011. Over the years he has spent most of his time bouncing back and forth between the Futures League and the top league. This year he saw his most substantial amount of playing time in the KBO after Min Byung-hun was injured after being hit by a pitch. Jung did a good job of stepping in to fill the hole left by Min after the injury and he is also expected to get more time in 2018 since Min Byung-hun has moved to the Lotte Giants.

Kook Hae-seong (#SBC16DO-038-N) was drafted by Doosan in 2008. Like many of the other players in the team set, he has spent the majority of his time with the 2nd team in the Futures League. However, since Min Byung-hun has left, fans can look to see players like Kook Hae-seong more often as they try to get into a secure starting role.

Kim In-tae (#SBC16DO-039-N) was the 4th overall pick in the 1st round of the 2013 KBO draft. Since being drafted by Doosan, Kim has spent the majority of his time developing in the Futures League and doing his military service. As time goes by, we can look to see some of these younger guys take on bigger roles with the 1st team.

Cho Su-haeng (#SBC16DO-040-N) was taken in the 1st round of the 2016 draft. Cho has made 146 appearances in the top league with the Bears over his first 2 seasons. Most of those appearances have come as a pinch runner, but he has also had 76 at-bats during that time and maintained an average of 0.276 over those 2 seasons. Doosan is looking to him to be one of the top contenders to take over in right field after the departure of Min Byung-hun. Look for him to develop and get into more games over the next few seasons for the Bears.

Doosan Bears Emblem (#SBC16DO-041-N) The Bears entered the KBO as one of the founding teams in 1982. However, they were not the Doosan Bears at that time and they didn't have their home in Seoul. In 1982 they were the OB (Oriental Brewery) Bears and their home was in Daejeon. They moved to Seoul in 1985 and continued to play under the name of the OB Bears until 1999 when the Doosan Group took over ownership and renamed the club.

Doosan Bears Mascot (SBC16DO-042-N) The Bears mascot is named "Cheolwoongyi" and he is a popular photo op for the fans before, after, and during the games. He is also seen on the field during the first pitches and other special events. During the game he can be found roaming the stands and helping with the cheers.

Seoul Sports Complex Baseball Park (SBC16DO-043-N) The home stadium of the Doosan Bears is Jamsil Stadium is a part of the Seoul Sports Complex. It's construction was completed in 1982 and it was the home of the 1988 Summer Olympics baseball games. It has been the home stadium of the Doosan Bears since 1986. It is also the home stadium of the LG Twins.

Doosan Bears Team (#SBC16DO-044-N) This team set features photos from the 2015 season when the Doosan Bears won their 4th Korean Series after defeating the Samsung Lions. The Bears went on to win their 5th Korean Series the following year in 2016 and they appeared in the Korean Series again in 2017, but lost to the KIA Tigers.

Yang Eui-ji (#SBC16DO-58-ST) This card is one of the special super stick cards that you get when purchasing the team set. There are a total of 10 super stick subjects for the set, but you only get 1 of them per box. I have no idea why they are called a super stick card. One might think it is because they are a sticker, but they are not. They are simply a thick plastic card that is clear.

If you have made it this far, thanks for reading! I am sorry about the scan quality of the cards, but hopefully you enjoyed some of the stories about the players in this set. Two of the sets were made (one for Doosan & one for Samsung) and released in 2016. They sell for around $20 USD per set. Hopefully I will be able to get a post up talking about the players from the Samsung Team set sometime soon. Thanks!

Friday, December 15, 2017

My Favorite of 2017 (KBO Card)

I have been away from this blog for a while as I have worked on KBO charity stuff at, but a tweet from Dave at Japanese Baseball Cards about a contest from Waiting 'til Next Year got me back into this blog. Without further adieu, here is my favorite KBO card of 2017.

This card is part of a 5 card set produced by the Samsung Lions and was given out to fans in honor of the retiring Lee Seung-yeop. The cards are not numbered, but they do have a number on the back that coincided with a drawing to win special Lee Seung-yeop items. This card was given out at a game I attended on 09/16/2017 and was the 1st of the 5 cards.

It commemorates the 3 run home run that Lee hit for the Lions to tie game six of the 2002 Korean Series against the LG Twins. The next batter Ma Hae-young hit a solo home run to win the game (10-9) and give the Lions their 2nd Korean Series Championship.

Thursday, July 6, 2017

Team Jokbal Charity Blog

I have been rather infrequent with posts recently on the card collecting blog. Partially because of no new cards being released in Korea and having not bought any new cards from Korea or elsewhere in Asia in order to save for an upcoming vacation. Also, I have shifted a lot of focus to the Team Jokbal Charity Blog where I have been updating people on items that me and my friends have been acquiring from KBO players to be auctioned in a year-end charity event to benefit kids.

1st Item Team Jokbal Received (Michael Bowden Jersey)

Over the last few months I have been getting opportunities to meet and talk with a lot of great guys in the KBO that have all embraced our cause and have helped out or plan to help out in the near future. In just a short time, we have been able to get items from Michael Bowden and Dustin Nippert of the Doosan Bears, Jeff Manship, Na Sung-bum, and Kang Jin-sung of the NC Dinos, and Roger Bernadina of the KIA Tigers. We have also had a bit of face time with other players such as Pat Dean of the KIA Tigers and Henry Sosa of the LG Twins and they plan to help us out in the near future.

Take a look at the Team Jokbal blog to see some of the items that we currently have to put up for auction and check back often to see updates as more items come in.

Sunday, June 11, 2017

The Week In Cards (06/06 - 06/11)

2014-15 Blue Edition All Star (#SBCBE-145-AS)
Kim Tae-gyun's (Hanhwa Eagles) streak of reaching base ended at 86 on 06/04/17. He beat the previous record of 63 games set by Felix Jose with the Lotte Giants in 2001. This actually happened last week, but it was noteworthy enough to make an appearance this week.

2016-17 Black Edition Super Auto (#SBCBK-151-SA)
Jung Jin-ho (Doosan Bears) became the 23rd player in KBO history to hit for the cycle, doing so against the Samsung Lions on 06/07/17. He also picked up his cycle in the fewest number of innings in the game by reaching the cycle in the 5th inning. He started his cycle in the first inning with a double in the 1st. He picked up a triple in the 2nd, a single in the 4th, and capped it off with his home run in the 5th.

He was the 5th Bears player to hit for a cycle. He joined two of his current teammates in this feat, Oh Jae-won and Park Gun-woo. Other current KBO players that have a cycle to their name are Sin Jong-gil, Lee Jong-wook, Kim Joo-chan, Choi Hyung-woo, and Seo Geon-chang.

A few more interesting facts about Jung Jin-ho. He was drafted in the 5th round of the 2011 draft and he has won #33 and #23. By the end of the night on June 7th, he recorded the 23rd cycle in KBO history, became the 5th Bears player to hit one, did so in 5 innings, and he went 5-5 on the night. I guess you could say that #23 and #5 are his lucky numbers.

2016-17 Black Edition Super Piece (#SBCBK-131-SP)
Park Yong-taek (LG Twins) became the 13th player in KBO history to reach 1,000 RBIs on 06/08/2017 and he should realistically move up into the all-time top 10 by the end of the season. A couple of other current players that are likely reach this milestone in the 2017 season are Lee Bum-ho (979) and Choi Hyung-woo (952).

2012 Topps (#397)
Hector Noesi (KIA Tigers) recorded his league leading 9th win on 06/08/17 against the Hanhwa Eagles.

2015 Super Star Baseball Season 3 All Star (#SBC03-063-AS)
2016 Panini National Treasures (#MI-BP)
Hwang Jae-kyun (formerly Lotte Giants) looks more likely than Park Byung-ho (formerly Nexen Heroes) to get called up from Triple A in the near future.

2014 Super Star Baseball Season 2 (SBC02-102)
2016 Bowman's Best (#10)
Kim Sun-bin (KIA Tigers) was overtaken as the shortest player in the KBO by Kim Seong-yoon(Samsung Lions). Kim Sun-bin measures in at 165cm (roughly 5'5") and Kim Seong-yoon stands at 163cm (roughly 5'4"). Just look at Jose Altuve, all-star 2nd baseman, of the Houston Astros at 5'6." You don't need height to be successful in sports.

2014 Super Star Baseball Season 2 All Star (#SBC02-73-AS)
Han Dong-min (SK Wyverns) has overtaken his teammate Choi Jeong in the 2017 KBO home run race. He now has 20 HRs on the season and Choi is a close second with 18 HRs. Xavier Scruggs (NC Dinos) rounds out the top 3 with 17 HRs.

2015 Baseball's Best Season 2 (#PA02-KT007)
Oh Jeong-bok's (KT Wiz) hitting streak ends at 15 games. Going into Friday night, Oh had hit safely in 15 consecutive games. He didn't start the game on Friday night, but he did enter the game later in the night and went 0-1. He's still batting 0.396 on the season, but doesn't currently have enough at-bats to qualify for the batting title.