Trade luck from LG, batting average .244 → No. 1 in home run alone… become the biggest FA
Doosan giant Yang Seok-hwan (32) is showing signs of becoming the biggest free agent in the upcoming Stove League.
Yang Seok-hwan’s bat is unusual. 안전놀이터Yang Seok-hwan started as first baseman 3 times in the 2nd match of the season against KT Wiz held at Jamsil Stadium in Seoul on the 22nd and played 1 hit in 3 at-bats (1 home run) and 3 RBIs, winning the team 5-1 and winning 3 consecutive weekends. led the series. Doosan coach Lee Seung-yeop picked Yang Seok-hwan as the Distinguished Player after the game, saying, “The home runs of Yang Seok-hwan and Ahn Jae-seok were decisive.”
Yang Seok-hwan reported his first RBI in the third inning with a 1-0 lead. After appearing at a chance with 1 company, 1st and 3rd base, watching KT starter Bo Schulser’s first ball, he hit the 2nd pitch curve and connected it with a sacrifice fly to the left fielder.
The home run came in the next at-bat. 2-0 lead in the 6th inning with 1st base unscathed. Yang Seok-hwan had a 0B-2S unfavorable count against Shulser, but this time he also hit the left-handed two-run homer by running away from the third pitch curve (127km). After the game against LG on the 16th, he reported his 5th home run of the season in 5 games, rising to the sole lead in this category. Doosan defeated KT 5-1 thanks to Yang Seok-hwan’s 3 RBIs.
It was in March 2021 that Yang Seok-hwan, who belonged to LG, wore a Doosan uniform. After first offering Yang Seok-hwan to Doosan, which needs a first baseman, LG general manager Cha Myeong-seok proposed a trade for Ham Deok-joo in return. Since then, Doosan has been agonizing over it and made the decision to hand over left-hander Pil Seung-jo Ham Deok-joo to get the starting first baseman. The two teams, which agreed to exchange Ham Deok-joo and Yang Seok-hwan, carried out a final 2-2 trade with young pitchers such as Chae Ji-sun and Nam-ho.
For Yang Seok-hwan, who was in a narrow position after being discharged from Sangmu, the move to Doosan was a godsend. In 133 games in the 2021 season, he wielded a batting average of 207, 3, 28 home runs and 96 RBIs, erasing the team’s first baseman concerns and contributing to the first 7 consecutive years in the KBO League to advance to the Korean Series. As the Bears’ fifth first baseman, he was reborn as a so-called ‘trade blessing’ from his first season.
Unlike the first year, last year was a series of disappointments. A chronic oblique muscle injury recurred from the beginning of the season, and even after returning in May, he suffered from aftereffects, ending the season with a batting average of 2.44, 20 homers and 51 RBIs in 107 games. In addition to Yang Seok-hwan, Doosan suffered sluggish performances by key players such as Kim Jae-hwan and Su-bin Su, for the first time since its founding, suffered humiliation in 9th place.
Yang Seok-hwan’s 2023 spring camp was more treasured than ever. His biggest focus was injury prevention. He worked on my obliques, worked on my flexibility, and strengthened my core with Pilates. Afterwards, he headed to the Australian spring camp to meet coach Lee Seung-yeop, who had the most homers in KBO league history, and asked for advice on how to push and the number of goals, and upgraded his skills.
Another reason why this season is special to Yang Seok-hwan. It is because he left Shinil High School and Dongguk University and joined the pros in the 2014 LG 2nd 3rd round 28th place, and before he knew it, he was on the verge of becoming a free agent. If you spend the 2023 season healthy, you can be rewarded with money for your performance so far, as other players did in the upcoming Stove League.
Yang Seok-hwan dominates the top ranks in various batting indicators this season, including first place in home runs and slugging percentage (.645), tied for third place in RBIs (15), and eighth place in batting average (.339). At the current trend, the biggest free agent in Stove League is likely to be his place.