INCHEON (Yonhap News) ― The reigning South Korean baseball champion Samsung Lions departed for Taiwan on Wednesday to participate in an international offseason tournament of regional league winners.
The Lions will represent the Korea Baseball Organization at the Asia Series to be held from Friday to next Wednesday in Taichung, Taiwan.
This will be the seventh edition of the tournament.
It has traditionally brought together league champions from South Korea, Japan, Taiwan, China and Australia. For 2013, China won’t have any representative, while an Italian club named Fortitudo Baseball Bologna will be playing for the first time. They are the 2012 European Cup champion.
Taiwan, as the host country, will have its league champion, the Uni-President 7-Eleven Lions, and the runner-up, EDA Rhinos, in the tournament. They will be joined by the Australian Baseball League champion, the Canberra Cavalry, and the Nippon Professional Baseball champ, the Rakuten Golden Eagles.
Fortitudo, Samsung and the Taiwanese Lions will be paired in Group A. The Rhinos, the Cavalry and the Golden Eagles are in Group B.
After round-robin group play from Friday to Sunday, the top two clubs from each side will reach the semifinals, to be played next Monday and Tuesday.
The final is scheduled for next Wednesday.
The Samsung Lions’ first game will be against Fortitudo on Friday. Two days later, the Lions will take on the Uni-President 7-Eleven Lions.
The Lions became the first KBO winner of the Asia Series in 2011, beating the SoftBank Hawks in the final held also in Taiwan.