Kensuke Kondo (30) of the Nippon Professional Baseball (NPB) Softbank Hawks unfortunately missed the batting triple crown in the last game of the season. However, there is still a possibility of winning two awards.
Kondo started as the 5th designated hitter in the game against the Orix Buffaloes held at the Kyocera Dome in Osaka, Japan on the 9th, and recorded 1 hit in 3 at-bats, 1 home run, 1 RBI, 1 walk, and 1 strikeout.토토사이트
Before this day’s game, Kondo was ranked second in the Pacific League’s batting average with a batting average of 0.303 (148 hits in 489 at-bats). Kondo needed to have at least 3 hits in 3 at-bats to beat Dongu Yuma (Oryx), who is in first place with a batting average of 0.307 (123 hits in 401 at-bats), but unfortunately he only had 1 hit, and his final batting average of the season was 0.303 (149 hits in 492 at-bats). ended with
Last year, Kondo attempted to become the 13th (9th) Triple Crown winner in NPB history, following Munetaka Murakami (Yakult Swallows), but narrowly missed out on the batting title and failed to achieve the record. However, there is still a possibility of winning two awards.
In his last at-bat in the 9th inning against Orix, Kondo hit a solo home run against Orix pitcher Daisuke Yamaoka, marking the end of his career. With his 26th home run of the season, Kondo tied for first place in the Pacific League in home runs, tying with Hideto Asamura (Rakuten Golden Eagles) and Gregory Polanco (Chiba Lotte Marines). If both players fail to add a home run in the game between Rakuten and Lotte on the 10th, Kondo will become the joint home run king.
Kondo, who recorded 87 RBIs this season, is ranked first in the Pacific League in RBIs, surpassing teammate Yuki Yanagita (85 RBIs). The gap between 3rd place Asamura (78 RBIs) and 4th place Polanco (75 RBIs) is wide, so he is likely to become the RBI king.
Kondo, who was selected by the Nippon Ham Fighters in the fourth round of the 2011 rookie draft, entered the first team in 2012 and played for only one team, Nippon Ham, for 11 seasons. During his time at Nippon Ham, Kondo was a hitter with the advantage of precise hitting and a high on-base percentage, but he was not a slugger type of hitter, with the most home runs in a season being 11 (2021) and a total of 52 home runs.
Kondo, who signed a 7-year, 5 billion yen (approximately 45.4 billion won) mega free agent contract at the end of the 2022 season and transferred to Softbank, succeeded in transforming into a home run hitter. Kondo, who participated as a member of the Japanese national team in the World Baseball Classic (WBC) held last March, contributed to Japan’s victory by recording a batting average of 0.346, 1 home run, 5 RBIs, and an OPS of 1.115 in 7 games, including a home run against Won Tae-in in the Korea-Japan game. Kondo showed off his slugging ability, with 5 of the 9 hits he recorded at the WBC being long hits (4 doubles, 1 home run).
Kondo, who increased his power through consistent training despite his short stature of 171cm, focused on long hits two to three years ago and attempted to transform into a swing with a large follow-through. After transferring to Softbank, he met hitting coach Yuya Hasegawa and his long-hitting potential exploded. Leaving Sapporo Dome, a pitcher-friendly stadium during his time at Nippon Ham, also contributed to his increase in home runs.
Although Kondo’s three batting crowns were canceled, he is on the verge of winning two batting crowns since the first year of his transfer. In addition, they swept first place in the Pacific League in on-base percentage (0.431), slugging percentage (0.528), OPS (0.959), and scoring average (0.373), proving that Softbank’s bold investment was not a bad choice.