The biggest topic of the day was Choi Joo-hwan and Kim Kang-min’s future. Kiwoom Heroes selected SSG infielder Choi Joo-hwan in their first nomination in the first round. 토토사이트 Hanwha, which recruited An Chi-hong from the FA market on the 20th, nominated veteran outfielder Kim Kang-min in the fourth round of additional nomination. Through this, it was also proved how much Hanwha is focusing on strengthening its batting lineup.
Hanwha was the team with the weakest lineup in the KBO League last year. Team batting average 0.241, team score 604, and team OPS team batting average + team on base rate, 0.675 were all the lowest. He had No. 1 home run in the league 31, No. 1 RBI 101, a central hitter, and Chae Eun-sung, a FA successful recruit, but that was all. There was a reason to actively reinforce the lineup.
Hanwha ended the rebuilding era by replacing Carlos Subero at the beginning of the 2023 season. Even in the 2025 season, we will face the era of new stadiums. The current report card ranking ninth is not satisfactory. Although Ahn Chi-hong has reinforced the lineup, he is not sure whether Ahn Chi-hong alone can revive the Hanwha lineup, which has been in a recession. Kim Kang-min may announce his retirement without joining Hanwha. This is why Hanwha can make additional reinforcement.
Currently, Yang Seok-hwan is considered a resource that can increase the weight of Hanwha’s batting lineup. As left-handed infielder Choi Joo-hwan was selected by Kiwoom, the order in front of Hanwha in the second draft, Hanwha’s options for big guns narrowed to Yang Seok-hwan.
Yang Seok-hwan, a right-handed catcher, hit .281 with 21 home runs, 89 RBIs and an OPS of .786 this season. He has scored more than 20 home runs in the last three consecutive seasons. He clearly proved his power while using Jamsil Baseball Stadium, the widest in the KBO League, as his home stadium.
However, for Hanwha, Yang Seok-hwan’s position is a shame. Yang Seok-hwan has been a starting first baseman for the Doosan Bears for the past three years. It overlaps with the position that Hanwha’s “4th hitter” Chae Eun-sung is in charge of.
Of course, it will be simple to use one of Yang Seok-hwan and Chae Eun-sung as designated hitters. Or Chae Eun-sung, who was originally an outfielder, can be used as a right fielder. However, Chae Eun-sung changed his position to first baseman because he felt burdened by outfield defense. The use of Chae Eun-sung as an outfielder is likely to be a loss to Hanwha in the long run.
In addition, second baseman An Chi-hong, who was recruited as an FA this time, has frequently played as a first baseman for the past two years. The reason was that the defensive range gradually decreased as it decreased to the mid-30s. If a year or two later, An Chi-hong, Yang Seok-hwan and Chae Eun-sung could overlap in the first base and designated hitter positions. This can act as a time bomb that can cause Hanwha a fatal problem in the salary cap era.
Hanwha is taking aggressive steps to reinforce its batting lineup. Yang Seok-hwan is the most obvious card to reinforce the additional lineup at a time when Choi Joo-hwan was missed. However, when Yang Seok-hwan is recruited, he has no choice but to think about the problem of overlapping positions. Attention is focusing on how Hanwha will take a stance against Yang Seok-hwan in the stove league in the future.