Korea's professional baseball league was founded in 1982, and since then baseball has become by far the country's most popular sport, with attendance at over 8 million people in the past two seasons.
This year, the league is starting the season earlier than ever -- this Saturday, March 24th -- so that the stars of the Korea Baseball Organization can play in the the Asian Games in Indonesia this coming August.
Until now, the league's earliest start had been March 27th.
Starting sooner has meant less preparation time in spring training and taking a break mid-season for the Asian Games could make for an unpredictable year.
The league's 10 clubs will be trying to find their feet in a new season and with new rosters, but the defending champions, the Kia Tigers, look to be in shape for another good run.
They've managed to hold on to their championship squad from last year,… and they're the only club to bring back all three of their foreign players, including Hector Noesi and Pat Dean.
The Tigers will begin their title defense by hosting the KT Wiz for two games at home in Gwangju, in the nation's southwest.
And the Doosan Bears, last year's runners-up, will play the Samsung Lions at home in Jamsil, southern Seoul
The regular season's first games start this Saturday at 2 PM.
Won Jung-hwan, Arirang News.