His name was called in the second round of the draft. He once thought that he could become a player who plays in the big leagues for a long time. The reality was tough. His place in the big leagues was small.헤라카지노주소
The team was pushed to the independent league in 2023. Since the Major League reduced the size of its Minor League team, good players have poured in to the independent league. They are struggling to renew contracts with Major League teams. If they are not selected here, there is no next thing.
Ronnie Dawson, 28, was one of those players. “If you hadn’t recruited me from Kium, you’d probably be retiring and coaching. I was lucky to get chosen and get another opportunity.”
Dawson (28), who met at Salt River Field, the training site for the Kiwoom Heroes’ spring camp, recalled the time and said, “I’m grateful to Kiwoom for selecting me, and I’m also grateful to the independent league for providing me with an opportunity to be selected.”
In his second year as a Kiwoom player, he said, “I’m a blessed person. It’s a blessing to be able to continue playing,” and described the opportunity given to him as “blessing.”
Joining Kiwoom during the last season, he displayed remarkable performance in 57 games with a batting average of 0.336, a slugging percentage of 0.399, three homers and 29 RBIs. As a result, he renewed his contract with Kiwoom again.
He said he found a good Korean restaurant in Columbus, Ohio during the offseason, and said, “It’s nice to see you all again. These are my friends. I missed you all,” he said.
It was not an easy decision. “I have a son who was born in 2022. It was not an easy decision to run away from my family. Still, my family will be able to visit me more often this year than last year,” he said, expressing regret over not being able to be with my family.
The KBO League is a place worth playing despite such regret. “I love everything here. Especially, the atmosphere is really good. There are fans who send their passionate support regardless of whether they are at home or away. My teammates welcomed me warmly. It was difficult to play alone in a foreign country, but my teammates welcomed me with open arms,” he said.
Life in Korea is slowly getting used to it. I am learning Korean as soon as I hear it, such as ‘Director,’ ‘Coach,’ ‘Good,’ ‘The End,’ and ‘East, West, North and South,’ but my name is still hard to pronounce.
Recalling his name for a while, he cited “Lee Joo-hyung, Park, Su-jong, and Sung-won” as his best teammates. “These young guys are energizing every day. I want to be a better player every day, and that’s what makes me a better player.”
Kiwoom fell to the bottom last season, and the outlook is not bright this season. The team’s ace, Ahn Woo-jin, left due to an injury, and the main batter, Lee Jung-hoo, left for the U.S. This situation could be burdensome for Dawson due to the nature of the league, which relies on foreign players.
“I can’t do what Jung-hoo did. He is a special player,” he said honestly. “I will do what I can. I will try to be the best version of myself as much as possible,” he said.
As for Lee Jung-hoo, he said, “I believe that hitting is common all over the world,” expecting his big league performance. “If I can play in the KBO, I can play there (in the Major League). It depends on the adjustment period. The ball is faster there, so I will need to adjust. Once I get used to it, I will be able to do well,” he said.
Dawson is usually full of energy by posting dancing videos on his club’s YouTube. “If I hadn’t played baseball and was born in Korea, I would have been a K-pop star,” he said with a big smile. “I like to dance. Dance and baseball are similar in that they are based on rhythm. Even when I’m alone at home, I play music and get into the rhythm,” he said.
When he was playing in the U.S., he was full of excitement, but he had to suppress it a little. “In the U.S., there were a lot of people who said, ‘You have to respect baseball.’ I still respect baseball and play hard, but my personality was full of excitement. As I grew up, I played football, and football players were full of excitement. But in baseball, he kept teaching me, ‘Focus, do this, do that.’ It’s not that I don’t understand. I need to focus, but I think I need to protect myself at the same time.”
I was able to relieve that feeling to some extent in Korea. “In Korea, I was told to ‘show me who you are’. That’s why I was able to maintain my true self. That was the biggest thing I learned last year.”
Ahead of the new season, he suggested “contributing to the team” as his top priority. “I don’t know what form it will be, but I want to be a player who contributes to the team at a critical opportunity and damages the opponent, so I want to avoid it,” he said.
“I won the championship when I was in the Minor League or college, but I want to experience the championship here on a bigger stage. We are working hard. Everyone tasted bitterness last year, and they are working hard with hunger, as they fell to the bottom of the list. I think that is what championship mentality is. How you respond when faced with adversity, how you push ahead, turn the situation around, and become a team is important,” he said, expressing strong determination to recover from the humiliation of last season’s lowest rank.