“It took 4-5 years for Park Byung-ho, too.” Will Lee Bum-ho’s patience and expectations go forward

“It takes a long time to grow a big gun. It is not just a story that just comes out of nowhere.” It is not just about the KBO League. The same applies to Major League and Japan. So, once you raise it well, you will have more advantages than you can enjoy.

In fact, it often took some time for the big guns representing the KBO league to grow up. Players such as Park Byung-ho (kt), Kim Jae-hwan (Doosan), and Han Yu-seom (SSG) also had long adjustments in the first division. However, they have demonstrated outstanding value since their debut. Noh Si-hwan (Hanwha), the home run champion in the league this year, went through ups and downs, and has been evaluated as having burst faster than other players. This is why all teams cannot give up developing big guns. The same applies to KIA.

Kia has few strongholds to foster its club. It recruited Choi Hyung-woo and Na Sung-bum, representing mid- and long-distance hitters, as free agents from outside. Realizing this issue, Kia is making efforts with high expectations for players who have talent to hit far distances within its team. In 2023, however, it had no remarkable achievement. Rather, it only reaffirmed its proposition that “a big shot takes a long time.” 바카라

Representative players include Byun Woo-hyuk (23), who the team recruited through trade ahead of the 2023 season, and Kim Seok-hwan (24), who the team has been keeping an eye on for a long time as a left-handed slugger. The two are highly anticipated as the next-generation players who will lead the KIA center batting line. However, their performance in the first team this year was somewhat far from the word “explosion.”

Byun was mentioned as a candidate for starting first baseman, but he did not seem to have any difference. He had a batting average of 0.225 with seven homers, 24 RBIs and an OPS (on-base plus slugging) of 0.664 in 83 games. Kim Seok-hwan played in only 12 games in the first division this year. In the second division, he had a batting average of 0.307, 18 homers and 73 RBIs in 79 games, but Lee’s expectation level is set in line with the first division, so he is not in the second division.

However, this cannot be abandoned. KIA’s batting coach Lee Bum-ho also emphasizes patience and gradual development of the two players. Lee, who later grew into a slugger hitting 329 home runs in the first division of the KBO League, also remembers having a hard time in the first few years. Now, it is more difficult than then to foster a huge catcher. Lee, who knows this well, tries not to be impatient.

“Right-handed hitters take a little longer than left-handed hitters. I think some right-handed hitters take longer,” coach Lee said of Byun. “Many people hurriedly think, ‘This player is a promising player, so of course he will do well,’ but it took five to six years for a player like Park to actually do it. That’s how much time you need to invest. I think skills gradually improve from the point when you have a mindset where you are not disturbed in this batting posture.”

Lee’s diagnosis and expectation are that he is gradually developing that mindset. “If he has shown some potential this year, I think he will be better if he continues to remain a little bit better next year.” “As he gets older and older, his thoughts change,” Lee said. “I think that if he goes up one step at a time with his failures and successes, he will be a good hitter in a few years.”

Kim Seok-hwan has the same view. It is also the process of making things.” “He is the player who agonizes the most and he is the player who needs to perform a lot,” Lee said. “I think Seok-hwan is the best batting position since he joined the professional league. I think I have the best mindset right now. Looking at the swing from the back, it is a little different from the previous one. I fully understand why I have to hit it so hard and I am taking the amount of training.”

The view is that such attitude could lead to rapid growth. “I think I can give 100 points to Kim Seok-hwan in this year’s closing camp. I think that if he maintains this well in terms of batting performance and goes to the spring camp well, he will probably be of much greater help to his team next season,” Lee said.

The two players still hold a significant portion of Kia’s long-term batting lineup. Only when Byun Woo-hyuk and Kim Seok-hwan grow up to be the main first baseman and Kim Seok-hwan to be a clear outfielder can KIA’s entire thread be released. Everyone is watching closely to see if a time will come in 2024, which shows such possibility.

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