Daejeon Baseball Stadium, home of the Hanwha Eagles, was the last stadium for me to see in Korea. It is also the closest to Daegu so I kept putting it off. So Sunday September 26th, I decided to head up and see the final game of the season with the home team Hanwha Eagles squaring off with the Kia Tigers.
Daejeon Baseball Stadium is another older stadium in the KBO. I am not sure of the year it was built, but I am guessing at least the early 1980s. It holds just over 13,000 fans and is different in one aspect from most stadiums I have been to. The concession stands are not in a concourse but out among the seats, so if you are getting a drink you can still see the action. It is a typical KBO stadium in that it has a lot of uncomfortable plastic seats and a lot of concrete.
I was surprised with how many people showed up for the final game of the season, especially since both teams are near the bottom of the standings with Hanwha being in last. It was a beautiful Sunday evening, and a lot of people showed up for the game which gave it a great atmosphere.
Hanwha got off to a great start with 2 home runs in the first 2 innings, and after 2 innings they led 4-2. The game got a little more interesting when early on a fly ball was hit to left field. The left fielder took a bad route and wound up diving, but the he over ran the ball and it dropped. I had a great view sitting down the left field line, and I could easily see how he overran the ball. A few pitches later, he was replaced mid-inning. That is not something that is seen very often, but he was pulled for another fielder.
Another interesting note was how the pitcher at one point threw over to first base at least 10 times while only throwing 2 pitches to the hitter. If that happens in the US, fans are booing nonstop. There wasn’t a word said while he was doing it. I didn’t hear any boos until the Kia runner was eventually picked off, and the Kia fans let him have it.
It was a lot of fun. Hanwha won big 11-3. I saw 2 home runs, some great defense, and the fans were amazing. I even got to see the wave done for the first time in Korea. I love the wave back home. I don’t really know why. I think it stems from being a child and going to MLB games where they would do it and having so much fun then. When I am at a game now I am still like a little kid.
The stadium itself was uneventful, but I am glad I got to see it. It doesn’t rate at the worst, but its not near the top either. Soon I will be ranking the stadiums in Korea.