With several contenders flocking to first base, attention is focused on whether Jeong-hoon (36, Lotte Giants) will prove his qualifications as the existing starter.
Since 2021,슬롯사이트 Jung Hoon has defended the most innings on the team as a first baseman. In 2021, he digested 796.2 innings in 100 games (94 starts) and 614.2 innings in 77 games (74 starts) last year. As Lee Dae-ho played most of the last two seasons before retiring as a designated hitter, Lotte’s first base became Jeong-hoon’s place. When Lotte coach Larry Sutton formed the lineup, the first baseman he picked was Jung Hoon.
Jung-hoon’s defense is still competitive. He had the widest range of defense among 14 players who played as first baseman in the team for the past two years, and because of this, he was able to stably catch the ball. An official from Lotte explained, “Jung-Hoon catches (throws to first base) very well.”
Currently, Lotte is looking into the possibility of first basemen such as Han Dong-hee, Ko Seung-min, and Jeon Jun-woo. They are also wearing a first baseman’s mitt because they feel the need to maximize their offensive power or lack of defensive power in their original position. If players such as Kim Min-soo and Lee Ho-yeon, who are aiming for a leap forward, are added, the competition is expected to intensify. Jung Hoon also has more reasons to exert himself.
The key is hitting. As much as he is recognized on defense, he should appeal why he should use himself in batting. In 91 games last year, Jeong-hoon had a batting average of 0.245, an OPS (on-base percentage + slugging percentage) of 0.620, 3 home runs and 32 RBIs.
There is ample potential for a rebound. Last year, at the beginning of the season, he suffered from bad luck, such as getting hit balls many times, but by the time he showed signs of rebounding, his flow was cut off due to a hamstring injury. Looking at Jung Hoon’s career batting average (BABIP 0.330) and the previous two years’ records (0.346 in 2020, 0.332 in 2021), the possibility of a rebound is clear.
Another number is worth looking forward to. Despite repeated injuries and sluggishness last year, Jung-hoon recorded a contact rate of 80.7% and a high number of pitches of 4.11 per at-bat. He had no ups and downs in his ability to hit the ball and look carefully. An official from Lotte said, “The ability to see the ball has not changed compared to before. We are preparing well for the season this year, so we can expect good results again.”