Korea's baseball season kicks off in spring
Spring is here and Korea's pro baseball season has kicked off. Due to the COVID-19 outbreak, for the first time in history, the Korea Baseball Organization has decided to hold the baseball games without any spectators.
Sports games all over the world have been suspended or have been indefinitely postponed due to COVID-19. The sports industries are preparing for changes that will come once the pandemic settles down.
Uncertainty for U.S. major league
Japan's pro baseball season to commence after June
Taiwan's baseball league kicks off
It's uncertain whether the baseball season in the United States and Japan will commence.
Taiwan began its baseball season and is grabbing everyone's attention with cheering dummies filling the stands.
I have listened to various opinions and thought in-depth about controlling the strict measures. From April 20th through May 5th, we are keeping the social distancing
South Korea's strong social distancing measures have been alleviated. The KBO has decided to begin the 2020 baseball season in May, two months later than the original starting period.
We have decided to hold matches without spectators. We have decided to allow spectators in the stands one step at a time.
Everyone's excited about Korea's baseball season and one American sports channel has been in contact with KBO about obtaining broadcast rights.
Suwon kt wiz Park, Suwon, Gyeonggi-do Province
KBO league practice began on April 21
The practice matches for the KBO teams began this week.
10 teams participate in 20 practice matches
There are ten pro-baseball teams in Korea.
The teams participate in 20 practice matches and each team plays 4 games.
There were no cheers as the stands were empty when the players from KT and Hanwha entered for the first practice match. The players quietly concentrated on loosening up for the game.
It was unclear whether foreign players could return to Korea when the pro baseball season was postponed in March. They returned to the country once the COVID-19 outbreak in Korea calmed down. They completed their two week self-quarantine and are now taking part in the practice matches.
I worked hard to stay fit indoors during the self-quarantine period. I also watched some movies during my free time. But most importantly, I concentrated on staying fit.
My family was worried but Korea has excellent measures so they didn't worry. On the contrary, I was worried about my family in the U.S. I hope the situation in the States will get better so that I can meet my family soon.
Fans see the matches via smartphones
Fans are excited about the practice matches, even though they are tuning into the games via smartphones and TVs.
COVID-19, a new view at baseball stadiums
Masks and gloves are a must
No spitting on field
There's a change in the atmosphere at baseball stadiums due to COVID-19. The players waved, instead of cheering with high-fives. The umpires wore masks and gloves, and the players are forbidden from spitting on the field.
The KBO has come up with a COVID-19 manual to have a safe and healthy baseball league.
If there is a confirmed case amongst players or baseball officials, all games will be suspended for three weeks.
We predict a three-week suspension period. If that happens, we'll see a decrease in matches. We will gradually reduce the number of matches.
Spectators will gradually be allowed
It is uncertain as to when the stands will be filled with spectators. But KBO plans to take things step by step and allow 20% of spectators at each game.
We are in a new-normal era due to COVID-19.
We'll see if the KBO league will become a model example for other sports industries.