catcher trade? KIA believes in sweat now… “We’re building the season with them.”

 The topic of spring camp, ‘strengthening the player base’, is a KIA that flows relatively smoothly. There are also topics worth raising expectations. However, there is one position that I cannot confidently say, and that is catcher.

It seems that the vacancy of Park Dong-won스포츠토토, the main catcher last year, who transferred to LG after obtaining a free agent (FA) qualification, is not small. Since joining the KIA through a trade last year, Park Dong-won has played 112 games and recorded a batting average of 0.244, 17 homers, 53 RBIs, and an OPS (on-base percentage + slugging percentage) of 0.773. In the league, it is difficult to develop a catcher with such offensive power and relatively stable defense in a short period of time.

Although he gave away the bloody nomination right through trade with Kiwoom and recruited Joo Hyo-sang (26), it is likely that there will be anxiety for KIA, which now has to run to the top 5 or higher. So, rumors of an unintended trade came out. However, KIA coach Kim Jong-guk believes that the current competition will be a strong asset to lead the team’s catchers.

Transfer student Joo Hyo-sang, Han Seung-taek (29) and Shin Beom-soo (25), who were in charge of backup catcher duties in the existing team, are resources that are competing fiercely for the first team entry. Opportunities are open to all players as it has not been clearly defined from the Arizona spring camp on who is the starting pitcher.

On the 23rd, ahead of the SSG demonstration game in Gwangju, when asked about the catcher’s competition so far, coach Kim said, “The batting side will be stressed out because they prepare a lot, but it doesn’t work. But as I always say, the defense side comes first.” I drew a bold guideline once. Park Dong-Won’s offense can be recovered from other positions. First of all, you can feel the will to use the catcher with the best defense to stably lead the pitchers as the first option.

Following this, coach Kim highly evaluated the efforts of the current players. Manager Kim said, “I think the two players (Han Seung-taek and Joo Hyo-sang) are doing well in terms of blocking, ball distribution, and defense. Shin Beom-soo in the first team is also coming out a little at the end, but it’s very good in terms of framing and overall defense.” We are planning to manage, and there is also Kim Seon-woo in the 2nd Army.” Coach Kim’s last words, “I will prepare well for the season with the existing catchers,” were powerful.

A catcher must have qualities, but experience is also important. He has a hard time being a complete catcher even without either side. He also takes a long time to nurture. However, he is also a catcher that can be used over and over again once raised. Of course, outside recruiting would be a good way, but trade should also be made. It is also the most ideal scenario for players to grow well in a competitive setting. If coach Kim’s words, “I will prepare well with the existing catchers,” can continue until the end of the season, maybe KIA will be able to foresee a successful season in itself.