“Last year, I played well through August and then fell apart in September and October. This year, I think my performance will depend on how I hold up in September and October.”
Park Chan-ho, the KIA Tigers’ “Infield Commander” shortstop, shook off his first-half slump this season by heating up in July (batting .320). He followed that up with his best monthly performance of the season in August. He batted .382 with 34 hits, 13 RBIs, 6 doubles, 14 walks, and 22 runs scored in August to help the team rebound.
If he continued his hot streak in September and October, he could win his first Golden Glove. The hump came. In mid-September, Park suffered ligament damage while sliding into a head-first slide at first base. However, Park bounced back quickly from his brief injury layoff, batting .303 (20-for-66) in September.
He continued his steady production in October, but suffered another injury nightmare in the second game of a doubleheader against KT on October 4. In the top of the third inning, Park extended his hitting streak to three games with a single to right-center field in his second at-bat. However, in the top of the fifth inning, Park was hit in the wrist with a sandbag by opposing starter Lee Sun-woo.
After complaining of constant pain, Park was eventually replaced by pinch-hitter Oh Sun-woo and left the game. The results of his medical examination were shocking. He was diagnosed with a comminuted ulnar fracture. Park will undergo a further examination on May 5 and then schedule his rehabilitation.
With only 10 games left in the season, the injury could effectively ruled him out of the regular season. Kia has been devastated by the loss of Na Sung-bum, Choi Hyung-woo, and now Park Chan-ho to injury as the team continues to fight for a top-five finish. The loss of the table-setters Park Chan-ho and Kim Do-young is a major blow to the team’s batting lineup, as they were the key scoring routes for the team without their center hitters.
Despite the unfortunate injury, Park is still in position to win his first Golden Glove. Park himself was secretly looking forward to winning his first Golden Glove.
In early September, he said, “Being the person I am, I expect to win a Golden Glove if I keep up this performance, but I will never let that expectation show through my behavior. I will only focus on the team’s victory, and I will not do anything tricky for my own personal performance.”토토사이트
Park has played in 130 games with the team, batting .301 with 136 hits, three home runs, 52 RBIs, 30 doubles, 73 runs scored, a .356 on-base percentage and a .378 slugging percentage. Park has already fulfilled the regulation plateau of 446 at-bats with 507 total plate appearances this season. He can keep his title as the first “3-hole shortstop” in his debut. This could have a positive impact on Park’s chances of winning his first Golden Glove as a shortstop.
Park’s competition for the Golden Glove this season will be LG Twins’ Oh Ji-hwan (batting .272/ 111 hits/ 8 home runs/ 61 RBI/ 16 doubles/ 64 runs scored/ 0.375 on-base percentage/ 0.402 slugging percentage) and SSG Landers’ Park Sung-ho (batting .270/ 119 hits/ 9 home runs/ 47 RBI/ 4 doubles/ 51 runs scored/ 0.351 on-base percentage/ 0.374 slugging percentage). It will be interesting to see if Park can bring home his first Golden Glove.