Park Chan-ho (28, KIA Tigers)’s 2023 season is full of expectations.

It is a new season after a career high season. Last year, Park Chan-ho recorded a batting average of .272 (134 hits in 493 bats), 4 homers and 45 RBIs in 130 games. In particular, he succeeded in stealing 42 bases, recapturing the title of ‘King of Stealing’ in three seasons after 2019.

Until last season, Park Chan-ho’s biggest weakness was batting. He has the defensive ability to match the big leaguers, but the bat was silent on every chance. However, in the 2022 season, Chan-Ho Park had the most hits and home runs since his professional debut. He also set personal records for most doubles (22) and four walks (58) in a single season in his career. Not only his contact, but also his pioneering ability, the result of a significant improvement was an improvement in his on-base percentage. 안전놀이터

What is the best batting order for Park Chan-ho, who has such batting ability and quick feet?

Most will think of leadoff. KIA was like that too. Park Chan-ho played 390 at-bats as the first hitter in the 2022 season. He also had the best OPS (on-base percentage + slugging percentage) (0.716) when he was appointed as the number one hitter. However, KIA often used Park Chan-ho in the 9th batting order in the second half. Due to the wide range of defense and the physical burden of the shortstop position, it was unreasonable to use the leadoff full-time, which should be in charge of not only on base but also operation. For this reason, coach Kim Jong-guk chose a rotation with Ryu Ji-hyeok (29). Coincidentally, Ryu Ji-hyeok’s batting feel was good, and the on-base percentage (0.431) when he was appointed as the first batter was better than Park Chan-ho’s.

This year, KIA is expected to appoint Park Chan-ho in a similar way. The batting ability that has grown last year and the ability to play the best base in the league are not lacking to entrust the leadoff position. They will try to find a breakthrough by using the 1st and 9th rotations considering various factors such as the opponent pitcher, the flow of the team’s batting line, and physical strength.

The variable is Kim Do-yeong (20), who is entering her second year. Kim Do-young, who joined as the first nomination and debuted last year, garnered great expectations with his post-high school level batting-running talent. In last year’s Opening Day, even Lee Jong-beom (currently LG Twins’ running base coach), who had a ‘permanent absence’, wrote the history of being the first in the Tigers franchise to ‘lead off a rookie opening match’. However, he was eventually pushed back as a backup due to the extreme sluggish hitting. If Kim Do-young uses last year’s pain as a stepping stone to grow and jumps into the main competition again, KIA’s use of Park Chan-ho is expected to become more diverse.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.