Posted April. 01, 2017 07:09,
Updated April. 01, 2017 07:13
The prospect of Minnesota Twins batter Park Byung-ho (31) in his second season in the U.S. Major League baseball was “bright.”
Park joined the spring training camp as an invited player after overcoming a number of hurdles including placement of waiver, but nonetheless demonstrated his capability by banking on his performance and skills. He posted a batting average of 0.353, six homers and 13 RBIs by participating in 19 exhibition games. He thus had the biggest numbers of homers and RBIs in his team. Notably, he had homeruns in two consecutive games just ahead of announcement of the team’s roster for the season’s opener, significantly elevating the chance to join the roster of starting members.
However, his team dumped Park once again. Park was nowhere to be found in the 25-member roster for the opening game, which the Minnesota Twins announced on Friday. Park is thus set to start the new season at the Minor League team, Triple-A.
The main reason his team cites was "reinforcement of bullpen pitchers." In fact, Adalberto Mejia, who was considered a candidate as the team’s fifth starting pitcher, made the entry list in contrast to earlier prediction. Even so, analysts say it is not easy to understand why the team excluded Park from the entry list. Robbie Grossman, who took part in the exhibition game as a designated batter on behalf of Park on Friday, successfully made the roster even though he lags far behind Park in performance in the exhibition games by posting a batting average of 0.238, 3 RBIs, and no homer.
“I feel regret but I will not be disappointed. I know what I need to do here. My goal remains always the same,” Park said. However, he will likely have to accept that he is facing a more negative outlook in this season.