In his third year in the big leagues, Kim Ha-seong (28, San Diego) spread his wings on both offense and defense in 2023. Last year, he proved himself on defense, but this season, he’s clearly established himself as an offensive force. Locally, there are already speculations on how Kim will be utilized next season, including his position.
Kim wrapped up the year with an away game against the Chicago White Sox of the Major League Baseball (MLB) at Guaranteed Rate Field in Chicago, Illinois, on April 2. San Diego finished third in the National League (NL) West and missed the postseason.
In his final game with the White Sox, Kim went 0-for-4 with a walk and an RBI. His final numbers for the season are .260 with 140 hits, 17 home runs, 60 RBI, 38 doubles, and a .749 OPS. Despite his “career high,” it’s a shame that he lost his batting pace in September as his stamina waned.
Kim was hot at the plate in August, reaching a batting average of .290 at one point. From July 23 against Detroit to August 8 against the Los Angeles Dodgers, he had a 15-game streak of “multi-hit” games, tying him with Japanese “baseball hero Ichiro Suzuki.
Kim also became the second Korean major leaguer, after Choo Shin-soo (SSG), to achieve the iconic Hota Jun record of 20 home runs and 20 stolen bases. He surpassed 20 stolen bases early on, but his home run machine was shut down with just three to go.
While the end of the season may have been a bit of a disappointment, Kim’s value remains unchanged. According to Baseball Reference, his WAR (wins above replacement) for the season is 5.8, which ranks eighth overall among NL players. While it’s unlikely he’ll actually win the award, he could be in the mix for NL Most Valuable Player (MVP) voting. His defense, which has been steady at every position in the infield except first base, hasn’t changed, either, making him a candidate for another Gold Glove.바카라
After next season, Kim will finish his four-year contract with San Diego. If he continues to perform as well as he did in the offense next year, he could be in line for a big contract.
In the meantime, local media outlets are talking about a possible position change for Sander Boharz, who has been San Diego’s starting shortstop this season, and Kim is being talked about as his replacement next season. For Kim, this is a great opportunity to increase his value.
The San Diego Tribune recently reported that “the Padres are already discussing internally moving Boharz to a different infield defense position.”
If Boharz does indeed move, his replacement will likely be Ha-Sung Kim. “Even if Bohartz moves to a new position, the team won’t lose much with the versatility of Kim,” Sports Illustrated reported.