“I just want to show you that I’m not at the level that fans are worried about yet. I haven’t said it on the outside, but I’m really preparing a lot right now.”헤라카지노주소
Doosan Bears third baseman Huh Kyung-min (34) had a season where his pride was hurt in many ways last year. As he assumed the leadership role as captain for the first time since his professional debut, he had a strong desire to have the best season not only for the team but also for the individual. The team successfully advanced to the fall baseball league by ranking fifth in the regular season. Considering that it ranked ninth, the lowest in the team’s history, in 2022, it paid off.
However, his personal performance was not satisfactory at all. He played in 130 games last season, batting average of 0.268 (115 hits in 429 at-bats), recorded 48 RBIs and an OPS of 0.703. Until now, his ideal batting order was to set up a table setter for his friends Jung Soo-bin and Heo Kyung-min, but as Heo’s bat got heavier over the course of the season, he could no longer join the top lineup. Heo had to move between six and nine times depending on the opponent’s pitcher.
Heo Kyung-min was certainly a batter who could hit much better than last year. This is why Doosan awarded a total of 8.5 billion won in 4+3 years to Heo Kyung-min, who was the biggest fish in the FA market, ahead of the 2021 season. Most of them cite solid defense as the secret of Huh Kyung-min’s growth to the third baseman of the national team, but he has been treated as the best third baseman in the league so far because he has outstanding contact ability at bat. Based on the existing top third basemen, he was a batter who was only slightly less powerful and had enough ability to produce good batting. However, since his batting average fell to the 260,000 level last year, it was natural for his pride to be hurt.
Fans love and support players more than anyone else, but they point out weaknesses more calmly than anyone else when they are in a slump. Heo was one of the people who received more criticism than cheering last year. He humbly accepted the criticism from fans as his visible performance has fallen. He used fans’ criticism as the driving force behind his sweat more this year. I believed that if he prepares for the season harder and puts in good performance on the ground again, fans will trust him and cheer him on.
Huh Kyung-min, who recently met at Blacktown Baseball Stadium in Sydney, Australia, said, “I want to make a season where Doosan fans can say, ‘Huh Kyung-min did a really good job’ this year. I think that’s enough for this year’s goal. When I heard bad stories last year because I was sluggish, I felt like I had to come. I also see what fans wrote once in a while because I’m a person, and I thought I should show you that this season is not the level that fans worry about.”
This year, he is playing as a table-setter with his friend Jung Soo-bin again, making it his top priority to light the centerline. Heo Kyung-min said, “Honestly, I hit in the lower lineup last year, but honestly, I really wanted to hit in the upper lineup. It’s right to do that mission if you go into any batting order, but of course, wouldn’t a player want to hit in a place where I can play more? To do that, I need to be equipped with skills, so I’m trying to make more contributing hits this season.”
“I also want to play table setter with (Jung) Subin, and I think the team can do a little better if I do well on the spot. Last year, I said I would do my best in the bottom lineup, but I was angry inside. If you’re a player, isn’t that right? I’ll show you a lot of results this season, so I’m going to prepare well so that the coach can write down the top lineup without any worries when writing the lineup,” he added.
He is also preparing for his specialty of defense. He was named the winner in the third baseman category at the KBO Defensive Award, which was newly established last year. It was all the more meaningful that the winner was decided by combining voting scores of coaches, coaches, and general managers of 10 teams and defense record scores.
He paid more attention to the assessment that “the field of defense has narrowed compared to the past” than to compliments. “I was a little stressed by the assessment that I was not as good as I was when I was young. Now, rather than being under such stress, I am trying to move a little more according to my current physical condition. Actually, I was stressed out because I am the type to give myself a hard time, trying to be more perfect. So I am trying to think about it a little more comfortably this season, not to get stressed out, and to show a solid defense like in the past,” he explained.
Doosan is focusing its efforts on the growth of young fielders, especially infielders, this year. Veteran shortstop Kim Jae-ho is currently left as an uncontracted player due to the breakdown of salary negotiations, leaving the shortstop position empty. Park Joon-young, Oh Myung-jin, Park Ji-hoon, Lee Yoo-chan, and Park Gye-beom are fiercely competing for the main shortstop, and they are also targeting the backup positions of third baseman Huh Kyung-min and second baseman Kang Seung-ho. There is still a big difference between juniors and Heo Kyung-min, but Heo Kyung-min is not stopping his efforts even at the position of the league’s best third baseman so that the distance can be narrowed as slowly as possible.
“Young players will have good physical strength, but I’m still confident that I can win,” Huh Kyung-min said. “I really think I need to do better this year. The regret of last season is still a big driving force until now when preparing for this season. I think my juniors will do well in their positions, and I just think I have to do well in my positions unconditionally.”
Doosan manager Lee Seung-yeop stressed, “The team’s batting lineup needs to be much better this season.” How disappointing it was to rank ninth with the team’s batting average of 0.255 last year was that Kim Han-soo, the team’s chief coach, was assigned the batting part this year. It is in the same vein that he called in Park Heung-shik, who has a strong opinion on batting guidance, as his new chief coach. Huh feels a great responsibility for his team’s poor batting performance last year.
Huh Kyung-min said, “The pitchers threw so well last year, but last year, I and other hitters had a little bad season.