“But I can’t ignore the first base gap…”

The complete batting line-up of the KIA Tigers was recognized by people from nine clubs. It’s the most powerful. SPOTV commentator Lee Sung-woo said while broadcasting the KIA game at the end of the season, “Without the injured, the best batting line of the 10 teams is KIA.” In fact, there were many large and small injuries, and even though the gap was long, KIA’s team’s batting index this season was at the top of the league.

Second in team batting average (0.276), second in team home runs (101), second in team RBIs (673), second in team slugging percentage (0.390), third in team on-base percentage (0.345), second in team OPS (0.735), first in scoring percentage (0.300), and first in pinch-hit batting average (0.285). LG Twins topped most of these indicators. Therefore, LG should be the strongest lineup this season.

However, it should be taken into account that Na Sung-beom played 58 games, Kim Do-young played 84 games, and Choi Won-jun played 67 games. Choi Won-jun did not have much influence on the team’s offense this season due to his discharge from the military and sluggishness. In any case, considering the absence of major members and the length of time, it is a very good batting line if it is in the second place in various indicators.

The same position as KIA’s Achilles heel is the first base. Everyone is worried about first base. Young professional first baseman rarely grows in each club. KIA is no different. Hwang Dae-in and Byun Woo-hyuk went to first base the most this season. 슬롯머신

However, the results were disastrous. Hwang Dae-in (27) had 37 hits in 174 at-bats in 60 games with a batting average of 0.213 five home runs, 26 RBIs, 19 runs batted in 0.322 on-base percentage of 0.296 OPS 0.618 runs batted in 0.259. Byun Woo-hyuk (23) had 45 hits in 200 at-bats in 83 games with a batting average of 0.225 seven home runs, 24 RBIs, 23 runs scored, 0.350 on-base percentage of 0.314 OPS 0.664 runs batted in 0.263. Oh also occasionally went to first base, but the key players were Hwang and Byun Woo-in and Byun Woo-hyuk.

In a total of 143 games, the two have 82 hits in 374 at-bats and a batting average of 0.219 with 12 home runs, 50 RBIs and 49 runs. Even if one full-time first baseman actually scores this much, it is close to failing grade. However, it is fatal to see this as a collaboration between two batters.

Hwang Dae-in became a full-time first baseman last year and produced 91 RBIs, but he did not improve this year. It is a season in which injuries and sluggishness overlap, and even the strengths were not displayed. Byun Woo-hyuk also has a possibility, but it did not explode at an important point. There was also a season in which he failed to continue the flow due to minor injuries.

There are first baseman resources such as Yang Seok-hwan in the 2023-2024 FA market. Will KIA wait for the growth of Hwang Dae-in or Byun Woo-hyuk. Or should we solve the first base problem by recruiting outside players. Either Byun Woo-hyuk, Hwang Dae-in, or make a master plan that gives opportunities to third candidates and induces growth, or takes direction through external recruitment.

It is true that in the 25-year history of the KBO League FA, there has been a side effect that makes it difficult to clear position traffic unless you are an S or A-class fielder. It is also true that Hwang Dae-in and Byun Woo-hyuk are still in their twenties and need to give them more time. This is one of the important issues that Shim Jae-hak, the head of the team, has to decide this offseason. Shim Jae-hak, head of the team, said, “The team’s batting index has risen, but the first base gap cannot be ignored.”

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