“What would it be like to play in Korea?” became a reality… A foreigner with his mother’s name and his late brother’s number on his shirt.

The Hanwha Eagles’ new foreign-born slugger Nick Williams has shared his thoughts on his KBO debut.

Williams made his Korean debut in the 2023 Shinhan Bank SOL KBO League against the KT Wiz at Hanwha Life Eagles Park in Daejeon on April 27, starting in left field and batting fourth. While he didn’t record a hit, he did make an impression with a push hit and a spectacular diving catch in front of the home fans. Here’s a one-on-one with Williams.

-On playing his first game in South Korea.

“I’m very excited and happy. The fans cheering and the atmosphere in the stadium, it was unbelievable.”

-On the atmosphere compared to when they were in Philadelphia.

“Even in Philadelphia, if we were winning, it would get loud in the stadium, but here it seems like it’s always loud, win or lose. The cheerleading culture is also something I’ve seen when I was in Mexico, but it’s a lot of fun. It’s nice to see that they continue to bring energy to the team.”

-Young-pyo Ko on how he fared against yesterday’s starter.

“He threw a lot of changeups in my zone, which was definitely good. I didn’t end up getting a hit, but I think I made enough good contact after striking out in my first at-bat, so I think that gave me a lot of confidence.”

-On his defense.

“I had a feeling that the ball was deflected a little bit (on the diving catch), but I was really happy to hear the fans cheering after the defense.”

-On his wide batting stance.

“I was talking to my hitting coach from my rookie year in 2017. I tended to have a wide approach and a low center of gravity after the second strike, but he suggested that I continue to do that even after the second strike. I’m happy with the wide, open stance because I think it gives the impression that I’m easy to hit.”

-On how excited he was to receive the Hanwha offer.

“I was first introduced to Korean baseball during COVID-19, and I’ve been thinking about playing in Korea ever since. I actually got a call from my agent at 6 a.m., and I couldn’t go back to sleep after I got the call and signed the contract. I even talked to my family and said, ‘Is this real?”

-With the time difference, it wasn’t easy to watch.

“It wasn’t a big deal because the season was canceled. ESPN and other broadcasters kept showing it, so I was able to watch it. Aaron Altair was playing at the time, and I think I was more interested in it because I had played with him a year earlier.”

-On how he felt about the Korean culture during his short stay.

“I found it to be a very warm and friendly culture, and everyone from my teammates on down was very warm and welcoming. I especially loved the food we ate in Korea.”바카라사이트

-What does the ‘love ae’ tattoo on his wrist mean?

“I’m a huge Naruto fan, and one of my favorite characters is Gaara. She has this ‘love ae’ on her forehead, so I wrote it down, and underneath it is my mom’s name. I got this tattoo because I love her.”

-On how he chose the number 3 on his back.

“My brother’s favorite number was 3. I wore the number 3 all the way through high school, and then I wore the number 5 in Philadelphia, but then I went back to the number 3. My brother passed away in a car accident, and I thought it would be meaningful to wear the number 3 again.”

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