Like the returning National Geopo (KT Park Byeong-ho)…
KT’s hit product for the 2022 season was by far the revived Park Byeong-ho. Park Byeong-ho recorded a batting average of 0.275, 35 homers, 98 RBIs, 72 points, and an OPS of 0.908 in 124 games in the 2022 season. He recaptured the home run king title in three years since 2019 (33 home runs) when he was in Kiwoom.
Park Byung-ho had to hear the word ‘aging curve’ amidst his sluggishness and injuries over the past two years. After catching Park Byeong-ho with 3 billion won in 3 years in the 2021-2022 FA market, KT leadership and coach Lee Kang-cheol poured out trust and faith every day. Park Byeong-ho naturally relieved the pressure at KT, and he also gained stability in his mind as he got out of the pitcher-friendly Gocheok Sky Dome.
KT was spending the first half of the 2022 season with somewhat reduced firepower due to Kang Baek-ho’s injury and a foreign hitter’s failure at the beginning of the season. As a result, thanks to Park Byeong-ho, who was resurrected, he was able to counterattack in the second half. It was true that KT gave Byeong-ho Park a full chance, but KT also benefited from Byeong-ho Park.
A year has passed. KT again turned its attention to the external FA market. Shortstop Kim Sang-soo was recruited for 4 years and 2.9 billion won. Kim Sang-soo also hasn’t been very good at Samsung in recent years. He was the signboard shortstop who led Samsung’s 4th consecutive victory and 5th consecutive victory in the pennant race, but a batting average of 0.235, 3 homers and 42 RBIs in 132 games in 2021, and a batting average of 0.251, 2 homers and 29 RBIs in 72 games in the 2022 season.
In the end, he gave up shortstop to his juniors and moved to second base. After manager Park Jin-man took the baton, he went back to shortstop, but it is true that there has been a lot of confusion in the last 1-2 years. Kim Sang-soo left behind Samsung, which had a lukewarm response in the FA market, and teamed up with KT, who passionately wanted him. 메이저놀이터
KT is the card that Kim Sang-soo is right for. Existing shortstop Shim Woo-jun enlists in the military, and a vacancy for at least a year and a half is inevitable. KT recruited Kim Sang-soo, seeing that he was still valuable as a full-time shortstop. Kim Sang-su will play as a full-time shortstop for the first time in a long time this year. At 33 years old, it is not a small age, but that does not mean that his athletic ability or batting stats will decline.
Later, when Shim Woo-jun returns, Kim Sang-soo may move to second base. KT is worried that the post Park Kyung-soo is not clear. In other words, KT considers Kim Sang-soo as an important puzzle in the process of trying to win again. As he did to Park Byeong-ho a year ago, he is expected to help resurrect comfortably. Director Lee Kang-cheol is a leader who instills a sense of trust and responsibility in the main players.
Will Kim Sang-soo be able to successfully revive at KT with a comfortable mind? Will Park Byeong-ho’s case a year ago lead to Kim Sang-soo? Coach Lee Kang-cheol will transform into the WBC national team command tower from February 15, but the national team and KT will use the same campsite in Tucson, Arizona. Director Lee will naturally be able to check KT as well. For Kim Sang-soo, it is an environment where he can face the spring camp with a sense of psychological stability and motivation.