The San Diego Padres’ Ha-Sung Kim became the first Korean to win a Major League Baseball Gold Glove, which is awarded to the best defensive player.
MLB announced the Gold Glove winners for each position in both leagues on Saturday. Kim took home the Gold Glove in the National League (NL) utility category.
He is the first Korean major leaguer in history to win the honor, and the second Asian to do so, joining Ichiro Suzuki. Ichiro won the American League (AL) outfield Gold Glove for 10 consecutive years from 2001 to 2010, when he joined the Seattle Mariners.
Last year, Kim was recognized as one of the best defensive shortstops in the majors when he was named one of three finalists for the NL Shortstop of the Year Award, and this season, he switched positions to second base, where he has also played shortstop and third base. This year, Kim played 106 games at second base, 32 games at third base, and 20 games at shortstop.굿모닝토토
Joining Kim as finalists in the utility category are Mookie Betts of the Los Angeles Dodgers and Tommy Edmon of the St. Louis Cardinals. Betts played 107 games in right field, 70 games at second base, and 16 games at shortstop this season. Edmon, who was called up to the Korean National Team for the World Baseball Classic in March and played alongside Ha-Sung Kim as a keystone combination, played 51 games at second base, 48 games at shortstop, and 49 games in the outfield this season.
San Diego Padres’ Ha-Sung Kim. EPAYonhap
The Gold Glove is based on a combination of on-site voting by managers and coaches (75%) and defensive records (25%) immediately following the conclusion of the regular season. Because records can be deceiving, the winner is determined by who impressed more on the field, and Kim’s utility rating was the highest.
Former San Diego manager Bob Melvin said throughout the season, “He can play defense anywhere you put him. He should win a Gold Glove,” he said repeatedly throughout the season.
Meanwhile, the position-specific Gold Glove winners in both leagues were pitcher Zack Wheeler (Philadelphia), catcher Gabriel Moreno (Arizona), first baseman Christian Walker (Arizona), second baseman Horner (Cubs), and third baseman Keybrian Reyes (Pittsburgh) in the NL, shortstop Dansby Swanson (Cubs), left fielder Ian Happ (Cubs), center fielder Brenton Doyle (Colorado), right fielder Fernando Tatis Jr. (San Diego), and utilityman Ha Sung Kim (San Diego).
In the AL, pitcher Jose Berrios (Toronto), catcher Jonah Heim (Texas), first baseman Nathaniel Law (Texas), second baseman Andres Jimenez (Cleveland), third baseman Matt Chapman (Toronto), shortstop Anthony Volpi (New York Yankees), left fielder Stephen Quan (Cleveland), Kevin Kiermaier (Toronto), Adolis Garcia (Texas), and utility Mauricio Duban (Houston) were honored.