Choi Hyung-woo wins All-Star Game MVP at age 40: ‘The legend continues’

“Living legend” Choi Hyung-woo (KIA Tigers) was named the “Star of the Stars” at the KBO All-Star Game, becoming the oldest player to win the MVP honor.

Choi was the No. 6 designated hitter for the Nanum All-Stars (KIA, LG Twins, NC Dinos, Hanwha Eagles and Kiwoom Heroes) at the 2024 Shinhan SOL Bank KBO All-Star Game at SSG Landers Field in Incheon, South Korea, where he went 3-for-4 with two solo home runs, two RBIs and one run scored.

Choi swept 19 of the 21 first-place votes in the media’s Mr. All-Star (Most Valuable Player (MVP)) balloting, edging out Austin Dean (LG-2) for the honor. At 40 years, 7 months, and 4 days old, Choi became the oldest MVP of the All-Star Game, surpassing Lee Byung-kyu (now Samsung’s second team coach – 36 years, 9 months, and 11 days) in 2011. He received a $10 million cash prize and a trophy.

The Nanum All-Stars defeated the Dream All-Stars (Doosan Bears, Samsung Lions, SSG Landers, Lotte Giants, and KT WIZ) 4-2 behind a strong performance from Choi Hyung-woo. It was the third straight win for the Nanum All-Stars, who evened their record against the Dream All-Stars at 4-4.

The KBO changed the team’s name to the Nanum-Dream All-Stars in 2015 to break away from regional competition, and the victory earned the team 30 million won in prize money.

Ryu Hyun-jin (Hanwha) made his first appearance in a KBO League All-Star Game in 12 years, pitching a perfect first inning for Nanu and earning the Most Valuable Pitcher award ($3 million). Dream All-Star David McKinnon (Samsung) won the Best Hitter award after going 2-for-3 with a home run, two doubles, two RBIs and one run scored, while Kia’s Na Sung-beom won the Best Defensive Player award (worth 3 million won).

LG coach Yeom Kyung-yeop, the commander of the Sharing All-Stars, won the Victory Coach Award (3 million won), while Dream All-Star Hwang Sung-bin (Lotte) won the Best Performance Award (3 million won). Hwang Sung-bin drew laughs when he arrived on a motorcycle dressed as a delivery rider in the bottom of the third inning, and he also drew attention for his provocative move of attempting to steal from first base after an infield hit.

The Nanum All-Stars opened the scoring in the second inning with a solo shot to center field by Choi Hyung-woo, and took a 3-0 lead in the top of the third inning when Austin hit a two-run shot to center field after Kim Hye-sung (Kiwoom) doubled to center field. The Dream All-Stars’ McKinnon kept the rally alive in the fourth inning with a two-run homer off Kim Jae-yeol (NC).

The Nanum All-Stars added a run in the top of the eighth inning to take a 3-2 lead, thanks to a double by Austin and an 토토사이트 RBI single to right by Choi Hyung-woo.

Twenty-two thousand five hundred fans attended the game, marking the 23rd sellout in the stadium’s history. The excitement continued into the All-Star Game, with attendance at the 2024 Pro Baseball Classic surpassing 6 million in the first half alone, marking the third consecutive year of sellout crowds.

The players entertained fans with a variety of performances. Won Tae-in (Samsung), the “Blue Blooded Man,” took to the mound with a ringer filled with blue liquid and drew the crowd’s attention, while KT’s Kim Min-ki dressed up as Ari from the cartoon Dr. Slump and threw a ball. Austin, whose childhood dream was to be a pizza deliveryman, came out dressed as a pizza deliveryman and brought out ‘real pizza’ to make the crowd laugh.

LG’s Park Dong-won cosplayed as an album by actor Kim Kwang-kyu, who looks like him, and invited him to the All-Star Game to take a photo with him. Dream All-Star Oh Seung-hwan (Samsung) pitched at the age of 41 years, 11 months, and 21 days, surpassing Yang Jun-hyuk (2010 – 41 years, 1 month, and 28 days – Samsung) as the oldest player to play in an All-Star Game. Sharing All-Star Kim Hyun-soo (LG) played in 13 consecutive years, tying Yang Jun-hyuk (1995-2007) for the longest consecutive All-Star Game appearances.

KT’s William Cuevas and Kiwoom’s Ronnie Dawson, who are known for their high spirits, engaged in a “dance battle” on the dugout during cleanup time.

The sigu-sipo was performed by “living history of Incheon baseball” Kim Dong-ki, Kim Kyung-kyung (current manager Woo Shin-shin), Jeong Min-tae (current Samsung Lions coach), and SSG signature Choi Jung.

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