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The Secret History of the Korean Bat Flip



Can you explain in your own words? What a best slip actually is so normally. When a baseball player has a big hit he just kinda gently lays down his right and continues on his way down the base path. But sometimes that doesn't happen sometimes. A hitter is very proud and here. She will watch the ball takeoff and sometimes they'll pause sometimes. They'll do this while they're running. But instead of gently laying down the bet they will launch it into space. There are many different ways of doing this. It can be a flick of the wrist. It can be a throw a defiant curl. Perhaps the bat can travel feet. The back can travel very far but often it sort of twirls through the air majestically like a baton and flip is it's almost like spiking a football Pablo AIDS Celera Tori gesture and as you know. This is something that is taboo. In the United States in major league. Baseball violates the unwritten rules and executing this maneuver will often result in a hitter. Getting next time he's up but in Korea. Backflips are not only accepted. There are also extremely common. That was yes. Our Own Mina cards describing a unique feature of baseball in Korea. The Korean baseball starts it season today as one of the only pro leagues on earth playing amid this pandemic and you'll be able to watch those games on ESPN. So since you might just see. K B O Player flip is bat. I asked me to be a guest on her own show to share my favorite story that she has ever written on why Korean players love to flip their bats. And how it start. I'm Pablo Torre. Tuesday may fifth this is espn daily presented by marathon. I feel insane power right now. I don't know how I feel about this. Meantime is a senior writer for ESPN and the host of this podcast ESPN daily. I am the captain. Now you will feel how I want you to feel. I think is how this works. People can't see this but Pablo was doing the thing where he points his fingers at his eyes and then he's pointing them at my eyes and it's it's very upsetting. So how did the story which I love so much? Actually come about what it was. I think the spring or early summer of two thousand sixteen which is important because we are coming off of the two thousand fifteen. Mlb playoffs whereas. I'm sure you will remember Joey. Batista flipped his Bat. Which feels almost like. I'm understanding what he did after a home run in the AL between the Blue Jays and the Texas Rangers and there were much hand wringing and commentary debate as a result of that critics called the Bat Slip Disrespectful. Not only to the opposing pitcher. Button the game in general if I were a player I wouldn't do that. The fact that a matter is what he did did not offend you. Just don't sit. There is flip your badge especially in the seventh inning but throughout this time and before that there were these videos of backflips coming from Korea. Right ed where Korean baseball players were flipping their bats do as defiantly as Batista and with great joy and style and panache. These videos had gone viral social media. Just so I started looking to a little bit. There's a it was an account on twitter. A website called my K B O. Run by a Korean American guy named Dan Kurtz and so he was sending them out and then they would go. Viral asked him how he got into it. He used to live in Korea. He was huge B O. Fan Korean baseball organization. But then I asked him okay. So why why are they so common in Korea? Why is this normal there? Why our guys not getting drilled in the head and? He didn't know and super intrigued by that. So I got in touch with another Korean baseball expert commentator for the O named Daniel Kim who is based in Korea and he had so many great stories about that flips and what not they there and how they were so common but he also didn't know why or where it started and he told me you should just come here and figure it out. So that's what I did so you actually go to Korea and this. I remember I remember it sounding like one of the great expense report boondoggles ever but you actually go to Korea with Mickey and your story begins in Bussan right and so what you're actually find when you travel across the ocean and get there so we went to Poussin which is extremely large seaside city on the southern tip of South Korea so they have a very popular team the low tae giants and the first thing we do. Is We go to a game at the stadium and it was revelatory cream. It is just crazy crowds. They're much younger than American crowds and they are cheering and dancing and going nuts. And they're they're drinking beer. I guess that's also different. They're all these events. There are cheerleaders cheer master and they're standing on a platform and it is just so much fun. There's an American Fan Mickey and I met at the first game that carry my her and he told us. Mlb is like opera and K B O is like rock and roll so were there and we're having a great time and all of a sudden this player who we. I'd seen before because I had seen of backflips name was Choi Jin Sook and public. He is enormous. That's just the only way to describe is an enormous? He would be so he comes out and his song is Elmo Maceo shots just were not I remember that

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