The replacement for Hanwha’s main shortstop is not a veteran recruited as a free agent, but a rookie with four years of experience.
In the offseason, Hanwha was hit by a thunderbolt at the starting shortstop position. Ha Joo-seok was caught driving under the influence and was suspended for 70 games by the KBO. He has to go through the season without a starting shortstop until the end of June, when Ha Joo-seok’s disciplinary action ends.
Ha Joo-seok’s drunk driving was an accident that poured cold water on Hanwha, which expected to escape from the bottom and rise to the middle ranks by recruiting off-season free agents Chae Eun-seong (6 years, 9 billion won) and Lee Tae-yang (4 years, 2.5 billion won).
Due to the vacancy of Ha Joo-seok, the center of infield defense and the main pillar of the team, Hanwha additionally recruited veteran infielder Oh Seon-jin from the free agent market. This was the reason why Oh Seon-jin was chosen as the third free agent card, which allowed up to three players. Oh Seon-jin, an infield utility player, was to fill the vacancy of Ha Joo-seok with young infielders. 스포츠토토
Hanwha’s spring camp is being held at Bell Bank Park in Mesa, Arizona, USA. In an interview with reporters, Subero Hanwha coach revealed a plan to fill the void of Ha Joo-seok.
When asked who he thought of as a substitute for Ha Joo-seok, Subero coach said, “The best way is to find the best solution from internal resources. First, there is Park Jung-hyun, and from a defensive perspective, there is also Lee Do-yoon.” While playing for Samsung, he showed his offensive power well, so we are looking at it in many ways.”
Next, coach Subero also mentioned players in the second team camp. He said, “We are thinking of the best way in many ways. The field of opportunity is always open. Second-team resources such as Han Kyung-bin are also leaving the possibility open.” Han Kyung-bin signed a contract with Hanhwa last year after appearing in ‘The Strongest Baseball’.
While Ha Joo-seok is gone, Park Jung-hyeon is the number one shortstop. Coach Subero paid attention to Park Jung-hyun again, mentioning the players he wants to improve and improve this year.
He praised Park Jung-hyun, saying, “As a high school graduate rookie in the first year (appointed as coach), he gradually overcame growing pains, and now he has shown himself growing to the point where he wants to take over as shortstop.”
Park Jung-hyun joined Hanwha in the 2nd 8th round (78th overall) in 2020. In his first year with the first team, he batted 2.7 9 Lee (17-for-61) in 30 games, and in his second year, he batted 1.9 6 Lee (21-for-107) in 33 games.
Last year, he appeared in 81 games and had a batting average of .204, 50 hits in 205 at-bats, 3 home runs, 19 RBIs, and 23 runs. OPS of .605.