MLB season openers in Seoul to begin at 7:05 p.m.

January 12, 2024

The 2024 Major League Baseball (MLB) season-opening series in Seoul in March will have both of its games start at 7:05 p.m.

MLB announced start times for its regular season games Wednesday (U.S. local time). The Los Angeles Dodgers and the San Diego Padres will begin the 2024 campaign with the two-game “Seoul Series” on March 20-21 at Gocheok Sky Dome in the South Korean capital. These will be the first MLB games played in South Korea.

MLB said both games will start at 7:05 p.m. (Seoul time), or 3:05 a.m. (Pacific Time) for fans of the two clubs in California and 6:05 a.m. (Eastern Time).

ESPN will carry both games live.

Prior to those two regular-season games, the Dodgers and the Padres will each play two exhibition games here, likely against clubs from the Korea Baseball Organization.

The Padres feature two South Korean stars: Gold Glove-winning infielder Kim Ha-seong, who used to play his home games at Gocheok for the Kiwoom Heroes for several years before signing with the Padres prior to the 2021 season, and former KBO All-Star closer Go Woo-suk, who signed a two-year deal with the Friars earlier this month.

The Dodgers also enjoy strong support in South Korea, thanks to their history of South Korean stars. Former pitcher Park Chan-ho, the first South Korean player in MLB, made his big league debut with the Dodgers in 1994. Another pitcher, Ryu Hyun-jin, pitched for the Dodgers from 2013 to 2019. In that final season as a Dodger, Ryu started the All-Star Game for the National League and finished second in the Cy Young Award voting.

The Dodgers made the biggest splash this offseason by signing two-time American League most valuable player (MVP) Shohei Ohtani to a record 10-year, US$700 million contract. They signed another Japanese pitcher, Yoshinobu Yamamoto, to a 12-year deal worth $325 million, the largest contract for a pitcher in MLB history.

They join the already star-studded Dodgers roster featuring former MVPs Mookie Betts and Freddie Freeman.