Travel InfoBaseball in South Korea

Let’s take a dive into South Korean Baseball!


Since its introduction over a century ago, baseball has become deeply ingrained in South Korean culture, evolving into a cherished pastime with distinct traditions and passionate fans. Credited to American missionary Philip L. Gillett in 1905, baseball’s roots in Seoul can be traced back even earlier, with documented references as far as 1894 or 1896.


I. History of baseball in South Korea 


During Japan’s occupation of Korea from 1910 to 1945, baseball gained popularity, mirroring its rise in Japan. Despite the tumultuous period after World War II and Korea’s decision, baseball’s appeal continued to grow in South Korea. However, it would take several decades before the establishment of the country’s first professional baseball league.


Seoul witnessed two of the earliest documented baseball games in Korea, occurring in 1894 and 1896. Additionally, on March 27, 1982, Seoul hosted the inaugural game in Korea Baseball Organization history at Dongdaenum Baseball Stadium, featuring the Samsung Lions against the MBC Chungyong (now known as the LG Twins).


II. South Korea Baseball teams 

There are 10 baseball teams in South Korea:

  • Doosan Bears, Seoul

  • Hanwha Eagles, Daejeon

  • Kia Tigers, Gwangju

  • Kiwoom Heroes, Seoul

  • KT Wiz, Suwon 

  • LG Twins, Seoul

  • Lotte Giants, Busan

  • NC Dinos, Changwon

  • Samsung Lions, Daegu

  • SSG Landers, Incheon


III. Where to watch baseball in South Korea 


There are 2 main stadiums in Seoul to watch baseball games, which are the Jamsil Baseball Stadium and the Gocheok Sky Dome. There are also several other stadiums in different cities such as Busan, Daegu or Incheon.


  • Jamsil Baseball Stadium

Jamsil Baseball Stadium, located in Seoul, serves as the home ground for both the LG Twins and Doosan Bears, boasting a capacity of 25.000, the largest in the KBO. It forms part of the Seoul Sports Complex, built for the 1986 Asian Games and 1988 Summer Olympics.


  • Gocheok Sky Dome

Gocheok Sky Dome, which opened in 2015, replaced Dongdaemun Baseball Stadium in Seoul. It currently hosts the Kiwoom Heroes and accommodated Pool A games during the first round of the 2017 World Baseball Classic. The stadium will also host exhibition games between Dodgers, Padres, and Korean teams before the 2024 Seoul Series.



III. Cheering culture in South Korean baseball


In South Korea, baseball games are transformed into lively events similar to rock concerts due to the enthusiastic “cheering culture”. Fans dress in team uniform shirts, brandish noise-making balloon sticks, and are energized by cheerleaders. The atmosphere intensifies as each batter is welcomed with personalized fight songs, showcasing the fervent support of the crowd.










Moreover, there are many different cheering tools. Indeed, at the inception of Korea’s professional baseball league in 1982, traditional Korean musical instruments like the Buk Jing, and Kkawaenggwari were prevalent cheering tools. However, today, cylindrical inflatable balloon sticks, also known as thundersticks in English-speaking countries, have become the norm for cheering at games.


And you would you like to go watch and cheer a baseball game in South Korea?


by Maëlle GEFFRAY

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