I haven’t really thought or planned anything special (for the first team call-up) yet.”
The KIA Tigers have been without some of their most promising players heading into the season. Hwang Dae-in, who started at first base this season, relievers Jung Hae-young and Seung-jo Jeon, and left-handed bullpens Kim Ki-hoon and Kim Dae-yoo are getting adjustment time in the second team.
Hwang Dae-in, who produced 91 RBIs last season, 먹튀검증 has struggled this year, batting .212 with three home runs, 18 RBIs and a .583 OPS in 36 games. Jung Hae-young struggled with poor command and velocity all season, while Jeon Sang-hyun continued to be up and down, leaving him with unreliable pitches.
Kim Ki-hoon, who exposed his control issues with 20 walks in 17⅔ innings, and Kim Dae-yoo, who struggled with a 6.92 ERA, also failed to avoid the second team.
Kim Ki-hoon’s performance stood out the most. Kim started all three games, allowing three runs on five hits (one home run) in 8⅓ innings with five walks and seven strikeouts.
Speaking before the game against Gochuk Kiwoom on the 13th, KIA manager Kim Jong-kook said, “I received a report that Kim Ki-hoon has improved his balance. If there is a pitcher in the first team bullpen who is not good, there is room for change.”
Kim’s pace also stands out. In five games, he’s gone five innings with five hits, four walks, and one run (unearned). Encouragingly, he hasn’t walked a batter. If a left-handed bullpen is needed, a call-up of Kim Dae-yoo could be discussed.
However, Hwang Dae-in is still struggling. In eight games, he’s batting just .143 with one home run, two RBIs, and a .580 OPS. He hasn’t had a hit in two straight games.
Jeon Sang-hyun also hasn’t had a breakthrough yet. In three games, he allowed three runs on five hits and two walks in 4⅔ innings. Jung has yet to make an appearance in the Futures League.
Kim said, “I’m checking his secondary records and getting reports, but there are no reports of improvement. Hwang Dae-in and Jeon Sang-hyun don’t seem to be in good shape. I don’t have any special thoughts or plans for them (first-team call-ups) yet,” Kim said.
KIA started Choi Won-jun at first base against Kiwoom on the 13th. It was his first start at first base in 1446 days, but he made a mark with his solid defense. His batting was also solid, with a multi-hit game.
No spot is guaranteed. This is true not only for Hwang Dae-in but also for Jeon Sang-hyun. The void left by Jeon has been filled perfectly by the newly reorganized triumvirate of Im Ki-young and Choi Ji-min. The starter’s title is already gone. It’s now up to the challengers to prove themselves in the first team.