Korean outfielder Shin-Soo Choo will retire after 2024 season in KBO with SGS Landers 

(Photo by Han Myung-Gu/Getty Images)

Julian Guilarte

Korean outfielder Shin-Soo Choo will play one final season with the SGS Landers in the KBO in 2024. After 2024, Choo will retire, per Jeeho Yoo of Yonhap News. The news was reported on December 13.  

Choo, 41, was also a 16-year MLB veteran who played with the Seattle Mariners, Cleveland Indians, Cincinnati Reds, and the Texas Rangers.  

Choo made one All-Star game appearance in 2018 with the Texas Rangers. His last MLB appearance was with the Rangers in 2020. 

The Seattle Mariners signed Choo in 2000 as a free agent out of South Korea and gave him a $1.35 million contract at the age of 18.  

Choo made his MLB debut with the Mariners in 2005 and played four games with them in 2006.  Choo was traded to the Cleveland Indians on July 26, 2006, for first baseman Ben Brossuard.  

Choo played 45 games with the Indians in 2006 and had three home runs, 22 RBI, five stolen bases, and an OPS of .822.  

Choo only played four games with the Indians in 2007 and spent 59 games with the Indians Triple-A affiliate the Buffalo Bisons. Choo’s season ended due to Tommy John Surgery.  

 Choo returned from the injury in 2008 and played 94 games with the Indians. He had 14 home runs, 66 RBI, four stolen bases, and a career-high OPS of .946.  

Choo played five more seasons with the Indians. In 2009, he became the first Asian Player to hit 20 home runs and steal 20 bases in the same season. 

Choo also played with South Korea in the 2009 WBC and helped lead them to a second-place finish. Choo hit a home run in the 5-3 loss to Japan in the finals.  

Choo had 22 home runs, 90 RBI, and 22 stolen bases in 2010. Those numbers were all his highest totals during his tenure with the Indians. He had two seasons with 20 or more home runs, 86 or more RBI, and 20 or more stolen bases. Choo was traded to the Cincinnati Reds after the 2012 season in a three-team trade with the Arizona Diamondbacks. 

He made his Reds debut in 2013 and had 20 home runs, 54 RBI, 20 stolen bases, and an OPS of .855 in 593 at-bats. He hit a home run against the Pittsburgh Pirates in the National League Wild Card game and became the first player from South Korea to hit a home run in the Postseason. 

Choo was a free agent and signed a seven-year $130 million contract with the Texas Rangers going into the 2014 season.  

Choo battled ankle injuries in his first season with the Ranges and only played 123 games. He had 13 home runs, 40 RBI, and an OPS of .714 in 2014. In 2015, he hit for the cycle against the Colorado Rockies and became the first Asian player to hit for the cycle.  

He had 22 home runs, 82 RBI, and an OPS of .838 in 2015. The Rangers made the American League Division Series and lost to the Toronto Blue Jays in five games in 2015. The Rangers made the Postseason again in 2016 and faced the same fate as the previous season, losing to the Blue Jays in the ALDS. 

Choo only played 48 games in 2016, due to hamstring, calf, forearm, and back injuries. Choo would never play in the Postseason again after 2016. His Postseason numbers are two home runs, four RBI, and an OPS of .720 in 27 at-bats.  

He played four more seasons for the Texas Rangers which were highlighted by a Rangers record 52-game on-base streak in 2018 and a career-high 24 home runs in 2019.  

His final appearance in MLB and with the Rangers was in 2020. Choo’s MLB career numbers are 218 home runs, 782 RBI, 157 stolen bases, and an OPS of .824.  

Choo went home to South Korea and signed a deal with the SGS Landers to play in the 2021 season. Choo helped lead the SGS Landers to the Korean Series Championship against the Kiwoom Heros in 2022.  

Choo has played three seasons with the SGS Landers and will play his fourth and final season for them in 2024.Choo’s KBO career stats are 49 home runs, 167 RBI, 46 stolen bases, and an OPS of .818 in 1,252 at-bats.  

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