Dodgers Opening Day Video: Chan Ho Park Throws Out First Pitch For Seoul Series

The Los Angeles Dodgers and San Diego Padres playing the first MLB games in South Korea with the Seoul Series made Chan Ho Park the natural choice to throw out the ceremonial first pitch at Gocheok Sky Dome.

Park made his MLB debut with the Dodgers in 1994 as the first Korean-born player and spent nine seasons with the team across two stints. Park also played two years for the Padres, which overlapped with current Dodgers manager Dave Roberts’ tenure with the team as well.

“There’s very few players that can look through baseball through their own personal lens of trying to perform or survive, and also try to build a legacy and feel the responsibility of whether it be a city or in this case, a country. Chan Ho had both,” Roberts said about Park.

“Obviously he impacted the Dodgers and Major League Baseball while carrying the responsibility of elevating and making notice of the people of South Korea and the young ballplayers that want to be the next Chan Ho. That’s hard to do. He’s been an ambassador for the game for many years and still goes back to Los Angeles.

“Obviously working with the Padres now, former teammate of mine, he’s done a great job from what I hear of hosting the organization at outings and dinners, and being an advocate. Speaking for the Dodgers, we couldn’t be more happy and couldn’t have been more welcomed here in Seoul. Very exciting times.”

Park wore a split Dodgers-Padres jersey as he threw the first pitch to Ha-Seong Kim, another South Korean native.

In 476 career games (287 starts), Park had 124 wins and a 4.36 ERA. Of those, 84 wins came for the Dodgers and he had a 3.77 ERA with the team. Over parts of two seasons with the Padres, Park went 11-10 with a 5.08 ERA in 34 games (30 starts).

Chan Ho Park used glove from Dodgers debut

Park added to the pageantry of throwing out the ceremonial first pitch by bringing the glove from his Dodgers debut. It required asking a museum that had it on display if it could be loaned to him for the night.

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