11 home runs with an elbow that couldn’t even brush… Choi forgets the pain, but is the best season of his life coming?

  • February 20, 2023

Choi Ji-man (32, Pittsburgh), who stood tall as Tampa Bay’s main hitter, announced an amazing start to the season last year. He reached a batting average of 0.357 and an on-base percentage of 0.491 in 15 games during the month of April.

He added not only a high batting average but also a huge on-base percentage and long hits, and his OPS (on-base percentage + slugging percentage) reached 1.086 in April. As the sense grew, the Tampa Bay bench was also Choi, but the strategy was modified little by little. Tampa Bay used Choi Ji-man as a thorough platoon, but it was a waste to have the team’s best hitter sit on the bench. Choi Ji-man also performed well against lefties and seemed to be breaking away from his previous image.

However, it was the pain in the right elbow that prevented only Choi from doing so. He started to feel sick at some point, and later the pain grew to the point where his hitting was greatly hindered. Several small bone fragments were already embedded in his elbow. After the season he was put on the operating table. Choi Ji-man said, “At first, the medical team had opinions about whether surgery was necessary. However, when the operation was performed, they said, ‘You did a good job. The inflammation was too severe.’ did.

Choi Ji-man recalls that everyday life itself was difficult, not baseball. Choi Ji-man said, “I couldn’t take a shower (because my elbows didn’t straighten well). I couldn’t even brush my teeth.” . Choi Ji-man smiled and shook his elbow, but at a glance, the range of motion of the elbow that would be possible for a normal person did not come out. A bitter reality coexisted behind her laughter.

Although his performance fell from May without continuing the good momentum of April, it was Choi’s only determination to swing with such an elbow and add 52 RBIs to 11 home runs. Fortunately, the pain subsided a lot after the surgery. And he’s been doing well in rehab. Despite many concerns, Choi Ji-man reassured those around him, saying, “He is doing the same training he did in previous years.” It means getting ready for the normal season. 메이저놀이터

Choi Ji-man underwent elbow surgery, so he left cold Korea and came to the United States a little earlier than usual. He tried to take more step-by-step steps. Choi Ji-man said, “Right now, I’m really good. Throwing a ball is good, hitting a bat is good,” expressing confidence, “I’m exercising while rehabilitating. The coach also said, ‘Do what you want to do and match it.’ The recovery of the elbow seems to have reached 80-90%,” he smiled.

Elbow pain is now a thing of the past, and there is a good news in the future of defensive shift restrictions. Choi Ji-man had a high shift ratio in the opponent’s defense, and suffered a lot from this. However, this year, defensive shifts are significantly limited compared to previous years. There must be two defenders on either side of second base, and the infielders must stay in the infield. It has become impossible to see extreme shifts like before.

Choi Ji-man carefully said, “You have to open the lid to know how beneficial it will be.” He just predicted that it wouldn’t work badly. Choi Ji-man said, “In 2019 or 2020, when the shift took place, I hit a bunt or intentionally pushed it. As I was so conscious, there were times when my batting balance collapsed.” Right side of the standard) There were many cases where it got caught in the shift, but we have to wait and see what happens.” It is not impossible to have the best season of your life if you create more hits with normal elbows and shift restrictions.

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