“I feel bad for my colleagues…” A hit that didn’t come until September, and the ‘Man of the Hour’ is finally smiling again

  • September 4, 2023

“I felt bad for my coworkers. It’s not over yet.”

Samsung Lions veteran first baseman Oh Jae-il, 37, was in the midst of his worst slump of the season. In the first half, he was batting .183 with 38 hits, seven home runs, 34 RBIs and 19 runs scored. With the team struggling, Oh couldn’t keep his head up.

In early July, he suffered a hamstring injury that forced him to spend some time rehabbing in the second team. By nature, Oh is stronger in the middle and late stages of the season than in the beginning. From March through June, he didn’t have a month where his batting average was lower than 2.8.

However, in July, he hit .306, August .281, September .294, and October .312. A typical slow starter.

This year is no different. Sure, he’s coming up at a slower pace than in previous seasons, but he’s still there to provide RBIs and home runs when the team needs them. Second half: .243 with 17 hits, 2 home runs, 11 RBI, and 5 runs scored. It’s a far cry from the first half.

Especially in the games played at home on the 26th and 3rd of last month, we can see why Oh is still called the center fielder for Samsung. On the 26th, he came in as a pinch hitter with the bases loaded in the bottom of the 8th inning against the Kiwoom Heroes, trailing 2-5, and hit the game-winning home run. On the 3rd, he had the bases loaded and hit a double to help his team win the game. This season, he is batting .545 with six doubles, two home runs, and 19 RBIs with the bases loaded. That’s impressive considering he’s batting just .168 with runners in scoring position.

He’s hit safely in all three of his September games, giving him a .333 batting average in September. He’s also hitting .333 in his last 10 games. It’s no exaggeration to say that he’s feeling his best at-bat of the season.

In an interview with host broadcaster SBS Sports, Oh said, “Two weeks ago, I was practicing and thought, ‘Is this how it feels? I thought, ‘I’ll just hit it,’ but I’m getting good at-bats. I feel good right now,” he said. “I’m not a big hitter, but when I get a chance, I try to take advantage of it. I’m confident at the plate and it’s paying off. I’ve been hitting a lot of pitches to the center, which gives me confidence.”스포츠토토

As captain, he had to hang his head in shame. The combination of poor form and injuries has forced Oh to step down as captain and focus on his game.

He said, “I feel sorry for my teammates because we are down in the standings. We have 30 games left. It’s not over yet, so I’ll try to win one more game,” he said. “Also, thank you for your support, whether I’m doing well or not. I will continue to hit many good home runs.”

The feeling of hitting that he didn’t find until September, and the 5 billion first baseman who couldn’t smile all season, is smiling now.

Samsung is currently in eighth place with 49 wins, 64 losses, and one tie. The dream of fall baseball is getting further and further away, but we will go as far as we can with Oh Jae-il.

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