Asia Minute: South Korea’s Pro Baseball Scandal

Nov 8, 2016

Credit Dodger Nation / Youtube

There’s a growing scandal in South Korea, and this one has nothing to do with the president. While Park Geun-Hye  remains at the center of a government controversy, the latest news involves baseball. HPR’s Bill Dorman has more in today’s Asia Minute.

This story begins on the pitcher’s mound.

It’s now stretched to include seven current and former players in Korea’s professional baseball league, at least two club officials, and a total of 21 people.

Two pitchers are accused of walking players on purpose in particular innings of at least two separate games in 2014.

Investigators say the price of the walks was three million won apiece, about $2,600.

Police say at least two executives of the NC Dinos baseball club knew one of the pitchers was cheating, but did not report it to the league. Although the player was traded.

Now those club officials—including the general manager--have been booked for fraud.

Korea’s Yonhap news agency says it’s the first time any front office staff members have been charged in a case like this.

Baseball and gambling have been linked elsewhere in Asia at different points. 

Taiwan’s baseball league was rocked by illegal betting involving more than 200 people and game-fixing from 2006 to 2009. Leading to an overhaul of the league.

Earlier this year, three executives of Japan’s Yomiuri Giants professional baseball team stepped down after several players admitted betting on baseball games. Although there were no allegations of interference with play on the field.