Hanwha’s second base has long been one of the team’s weak positions. It wasn’t until 2014, when Chung Geun-woo (42), who is considered the best second baseman in history, was recruited as an FA, that solved his long-standing problem, and Chung Eun-won (24), who joined the team in 2018, was naturally replaced by a generation of second basemen. Jung Eun-won, who received the first Golden Glove in the second basemen category as a pure Hanwha player in 2021, seemed to keep the position, but the structure began to change last year.헤라카지노주소
While Jung Eun-won faltered, a rival named Moon Hyun-bin (20) stood out. Moon recorded 100 hits (114 hits) in a single season for the seventh time in the history of a high school graduate rookie, and secured the position of main second baseman in the second half of this season. Jung initially had plans to join the military and lost all of his capacity, but as he decided to play for another year, fierce competition between the two seemed likely to intensify.
However, the situation changed unexpectedly again. As Ahn Chi-hong (34), a three-time second baseman of the Golden Glove, joined the Hanwha Eagles with a contract worth up to 7.2 billion won (6.37 million U.S. dollars) for 4+2 years as an FA, the instability of Jung Eun-won and Moon Hyun-bin fell on the top of their backs. Although the players in the second base alone have overlapped, there have been few ups and downs for the Hanwha Eagles, which needed reinforcement of its batting lineup in any way, and there has been no batter as good as Ahn Chi-hong who has proven his consistency.
“A player who has been hired as a free agent is a factor that can stimulate expectations among the team and the club. Expectations are inevitably different when a player with the same membership is hired as well as when even one new player is hired. With two new foreign hitter Jonathan Peraza joining Ahn Chi-hong, I think his offense will improve compared to last year,” Hanwha coach Choi Won-ho said.
However, there are also some challenges to be resolved. The task is to arrange transportation around the second base. An Chi-hong has played at second base for most of his career in 14 seasons, but has covered first baseman from time to time since 2018. If Jung Eun-won and Moon Hyun-bin show competitiveness at second base, An Chi-hong can share the position of first baseman and designated hitter with Chae Eun-sung.
If An Chi-hong keeps the second base as his main position, Jung Eun-won and Moon Hyun-bin should go out to the outfield. At the spring camp in Melbourne, Australia, which is just a week away, both players will start practice defense as well as second base. Jung Eun-won practices as center fielder and Moon as left fielder.
Jung Eun-won, who almost exclusively played second baseman since his professional debut, took the center field test at the finishing camp in Miyazaki, Japan, after the last season. Analysts said that he “follows the ball better than expected.” Moon, who moved between center field and second base last year, experienced corner outfield while playing left field at the Asian Professional Baseball Championship (APBC).
“I would like to have him practice several outfield positions, but according to the defense coaches in charge, it is difficult to practice all outfield positions while playing in the infield together. We have decided to practice outfield in one spot each,” Choi said. “Players who see outfield for the first time tend to adapt faster to center field positions than corners where the ball bends. Why Jung Eun-won, who has no experience at all, is taking the center field? For Moon Hyun-bin, a corner outfield is a little better than center field.
The best scenario is that An Chi-hong, Jung Eun-won and Moon Hyun-bin all show their competitive edge. If the outfield defense is adapted under the premise that Jung Eun-won’s hit will revive and Moon Hyun-bin’s growth will continue, all three players can join the starting lineup and operate various lineup in any way. Although it could cause weakening of the outfield defense, Hanwha is the way to maximize productivity of its batting lineup.
Of course, practicing cannot instantly adjust to a position overnight. It should be seen that it is not a position change yet, but an outfield combination. Both have strong affection for the second base and do not want to miss it. In a situation where outfield practice is inevitable, the competition for the second base continues. The second base has never been so fierce and hot in Hanwha’s history. I wonder who will be the owner of Hanwha’s second base, which has become the biggest battlefield in the team, and how the traffic will be organized.