December 21, 2012 10:42
Park Chan-ho left for Los Angeles on Thursday in what may amount to a year out of the limelight as he ponders his options going forward some three weeks after he called time on his career as a professional baseball player.
"I may just take next year to think about what to do next," he said before his departure. After announcing his retirement, Park was widely expected to become involved with the NC Dinos in the Korea Professional Baseball League as he has so many close contacts with the team. But he said he has no plan to manage or own a team in Korea for the time being.
Now pundits predict he may be heading to the San Diego Padres, managed by Peter O'Malley. O'Malley helped Park adapt to life in the U.S. when Park joined the Los Angeles Dodgers, which O'Malley owned at the time, and the two have remained friends ever since.
Park played with the Padres after a seven-year stint with the Dodgers from 1994 to 2001 and three seasons with the Texas Rangers. He spent 17 years in Major League Baseball and holds the record for most wins by an Asian pitcher.
He plans to meet O'Malley on an informal basis this Christmas with his family and the topic of Park's future career is more than likely to pop up.
Park left for the U.S. with his wife and two daughters. He reportedly plans to look for a new home in a suitable neighborhood close to good schools in either Los Angeles or San Diego. Park will return to Korea in a month.
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