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Jamsil Derby – A Fantastic First Korean Baseball Game

The Jamsil derby is one of the biggest games in the Korean baseball league. I came in knowing next to nothing about Korean baseball. I just told my friend Miguel that I wanted to go to a baseball game once I moved. After two years, we finally reunited in Seoul when I visited for the weekend.

Baseball is BIG in Korea

Baseball is a really popular sport in Korea and is probably just about as watched as football. As someone who has been to Major League games in the US, I have an appreciation for the sport.

Baseball in America seems to be much more of a niche interest, but here in Korea, most people I know are invested in their teams. I might even go as far as to say that it looks like it’s about as popular as football.

Jamsil Derby – Heading Over to The Jamsil Baseball Stadium

My friend Miguel told me that the location of the stadium is at the Sports Complex metro stadium rather than Jamsil. It turned out we were on the same train and he easily found me at the metro entrance. I’ve got to give props to Miguel, he sorted out the tickets. Moreover it was also great to be accompanied by someone who speaks Korean.

Unlike at a sporting event in the UK or the US, I was able to get into the stadium with my bag, no questions asked. Not only that, Miguel told me that I could leave my bag at my seat while we get some food. This concept is still something I’m trying to wrap my head around.

Food and Beer at Reasonable Prices

Although it’s been almost 8 years since I’ve been to a baseball game in America. I do remember the food and beer being quite overpriced. It seems to be an expectation when going to a football match in the UK as well, but not in Korea! What’s interesting about the Jamsil Stadium is that it has all the usual fast food places. Miguel and I paid about £6 each for a box of chicken at Olive Chicken.

There’s also quite a good selection of different places you can eat, such as Domino’s, Frank Burger and a few hot dog stands. In addition, there’s also a GS25 where you can buy a can of Cass for about £1.70. This is definitely better than the ripoffs you have to deal with at football matches in Scotland. Before the game started, I knew I wanted to buy a Doosan Bears hat and it only cost me about 15 quid which is a very fair price.

An Amazing and Enjoyable Jamsil Derby Atmosphere

Once Miguel and I got to our seats, I started to take in the atmosphere this stadium had to offer. This stadium just has 5000 more in capacity than Tynecastle. It was also pretty much filled to the brim and it did feel like I was packed in. Both the Doosan Bears and the LG Twins use this ground as their home, so when they play each other it’s known as the Jamsil Derby.

Just like in America, they played the national anthem just before the game started. I stood and took my hat off to show respect as a guest in this country. Which garnered some amusement from spectators sitting a few seats adjacent from me.

The game was quite neck and neck as the two teams took the lead at different points. Eventually Doosan managed to take a huge lead as it ended 9-5 to Doosan. The atmosphere felt great as it was completely different from a Major League game. In America, it feels like people just eat their hot dogs and leave after the 3rd inning. At this game, people were cheering for the whole 9 innings.

The atmosphere had the family friendly nature of a Major League game, but the noise of a Scottish football game. I enjoyed myself much more than I expected as a lot of people tend to say that baseball is boring. I for one would have to disagree with that. The location of the stadium is also conveniently close to the Dong Seoul bus station, so I was able to get back to Ulsan without any hassle.

If you enjoyed reading this, be sure to check out some of my other posts:

Backpacking in Sokcho

A Day in Daegu

Backpacking in Belgrade

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