He became the home run king by hitting 44 home runs while using Jamsil Stadium, the largest in Korea, as his home. He was a trustworthy hitter 메이저놀이터 who consistently scored 100 RBIs as the No. 4 hitter for the Doosan Bears after leaping to become a regular starter.
That is why coach Lee Seung-yeop feels the sluggish performance of Kim Jae-hwan (35) this season all the more painfully. Director Lee still believes in the rebound of Kim Jae-hwan, who has been watching with affection from his appointment as the same left-handed hitter.
I waited silently with positive theories, and one by one led to good results. Now, that ‘baseball of faith’ refers to Jaehwan Kim. Will Kim Jae-hwan be revived?
Head coach Lee Seung-yeop, who was appointed ahead of this season, was not in a hurry even though he had no coaching experience. Even when foreign pitcher Dylan Pyle left at the beginning of the season, he waited silently, and when additional injuries occurred in other parts, he brought in Brandon Waddell and succeeded.
Even before the season, he struggled with the position of shortstop, but with patience, he established an infinite competition mode and eventually resolved his concerns by leading veteran Kim Jae-ho to rebound.
Coach Lee, who sighed deeply when asked about Jose Rojas, a foreign hitter who had been sluggish throughout the first half, believed in the possibility and rebounded with a batting average of 0.281 in the second half and 0.299 in August.
Coach Lee said of Rojas, “It took a long time,” but “I think the condition is definitely better than the first half of the first half. In the game, I use the toe step. Besides, since I hit bunt hits, the number of goals is also increasing a little,” he expressed satisfaction.
Doosan, who played 108 games, is 54 wins, 53 losses and 1 draw, and is in 6th place, 0.5 games behind the 5th place KIA Tigers. It is still a situation where you can fully aim for advances in fall baseball, but you need to work harder. For this, the role of central hitter Kim Jae-hwan is desperately needed.
Kim Jae-hwan is a great gun with a career batting average of 0.285 and 233 home runs. After the 2021 season, he signed a 4-year contract for a total of 11.5 billion won as a free agent (FA), but last year he had a batting average of 0.248 with 23 homers and 72 RBIs, leaving regret. At the same time as taking office, manager Lee requested Kim Jae-hwan to work hard, but this season is having the worst time since 2016, when he leaped to become a regular starter with a batting average of 0.219, 9 home runs and 40 RBIs.
He shows his faith by consistently playing in the game, but he is seldom finding a solution. In the last three matches against SSG Landers, they all started from the bench. He was also a kind of stimulation therapy, but in the last two games against the LG Twins, which were canceled in the rain, he was named in the starting lineup again. Coach Lee, who we met at Jamsil Stadium ahead of the match against LG on the 30th, said, “Shouldn’t we be running? I missed a lot last weekend.”
When asked about the possibility of his rebound, he said, “It’s a difficult story. In fact, this is a very sensitive part, and if you have something to say, doing it directly with the player himself doesn’t lower trust. I was speechless.
However, expectations for his rebound remain. “I think we can definitely make a rebound. But I’m thinking that it would be nice if we could do a little more. I’ll talk directly about the technical part,” he said. Last week, I tried not to go to Gyeonggi-do, and I tried to go out as a pinch hitter,” he said.
He continued, “Still, there is a difference between Jaehwan being in the lineup and being out of the game and entering the middle of the game, so in this series, he was put on the lineup, but he was canceled.” He added, “I have to do my part, but I have to wait.”
I waited silently for injuries or sluggishness, and as a result, it became a valuable wait. There are not many games left, but it is an important road to fall baseball. Furthermore, the role he will show in fall baseball can be a reward for waiting. Will Kim Jae-hwan, who gave manager Lee Seung-yeop troubles throughout the season, make the command tower smile with a miraculous rebound?