‘May batting average of 0.384′ instead of a run scored…’Around the age of 30,’ Hong Chang-ki’s smile has changed.

They’ve overcome adversity and blossomed even brighter. LG Twins’ Hong Chang-ki is on a roll in 2023.

In the month of May, Hong batted 3 for 8 with 33 hits in 86 at-bats, topping the monthly batting averages of Park Chan-ho of the KIA Tigers (3 for 8) and Yang Yang-ji of the Doosan Bears (3 for 7).

When you think of Hong, you think of razor-sharp contact and high slugging percentage. These are the elements that have garnered the most attention since he became a sensation as an OPS (on-base percentage + slugging percentage) hitter in 2020. After ranking sixth in OPS that year (4.1), Hong became the “Run King” in 2021 with a 4.5 OPS.

He literally scored once every two plate appearances. This feat was accomplished by beating out the likes of KT Wiz’s Kang Baek-ho, Kiwoom Heroes’ Lee Jung-hoo, NC’s Yang Ji, and SSG Landers’ Choi Jeong-chung and Choo Shin-soo. While all of these players are center fielders who represent their teams, Hong is a shift hitter who often takes leadoffs.

He doesn’t have overwhelming speed. He doesn’t have the tools to hit for power. But he’s the ideal table-setter with a variety of strengths. He even won the Golden Glove for outfielders.

He struggled last year, a year in which his “go for it” attitude was shaken. He had a hard time adjusting to the expanded strike zone. He still maintained his 3-for-9 slugging percentage, but his versatility turned into ambiguity. The occasional one-hitter was missing, and injuries, especially in the second half of the year, caused his performance to plummet. In defense, he was also shuffled between left and right wing when Park Hae-min was brought in.

This year, at age 30, is different. LG coach Yeom Kyung-yeop praised Hong’s batting this season, saying, “He’s naturally good at hitting. He doesn’t pull fouls, he pushes them.

“He’s a good hitter when he pushes and hits good pitches, but that doesn’t mean he tries to hit to center field or left field. Those days are gone. It’s important to maximize the contact area and to take your swing to the end, even if your timing is a little late, like Hong did.”

“The team won a lot (+10 win-loss margin) and I played well, so it was a good month for me,” Hong recalls of May. LG went undefeated in the month of May, winning all nine series.

Although he was the monthly batting leader, it’s hard to top the monthly MVP. Park Dong-won, who has a 1.184 OPS with nine home runs, and Lim Chan-kyu, who has a 1.17 ERA with four wins, have high barriers. However, Hong Chang-ki has also moved up to the top of the batting order with a 3-for-3 record through June 1.

“Not only me, but all the players did well overall. Flutko pitched well, (Lim) Changuy, (Park) Dong-won, (Park) Hae-min, all of them were good. It feels good to have the top batting average for a month, and we’ll try to keep it going in June.”메이저사이트

On whether he has changed his style to focus on hitting rather than getting on base, he said, “I’ve been trying to hit aggressively since last year. I just became more passive later on because of my poor performance,” he said, adding, “Even if the results don’t go well, the coach lets me go. If you keep doing it, the hits will eventually come. Regardless of my grades, I’m happy that I’m hitting a lot of good balls, unlike last year.” As a result, this year she started at the bottom of the order and worked her way up to the leadoff spot.

“This year, I’m happy that I’m hitting strong pitches even when I’m pushed. I feel like I can hit a little more confidently, but the most important thing is my on-base percentage. I’m the leadoff hitter.”

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