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From Oh Ji-hwan, Park Chan-ho, and Kim Hye-sung Shortstop Daejeon is coming to an end

Oh Ji-hwan and Park Chan-ho compete for the top spot in the league Kim Hye-seong also prepares to return to shortstop as young player develops

Those who are already at the top, competitors who are closely following, and even players who are growing up. The competition for the best shortstop in the 2024 season is expected to become more intense.

Many players especially shined at the shortstop position this season.

In the KBO Defense Award, which was newly established for the first time this year, the only position where a joint award occurred was in the shortstop category. Oh Ji-hwan (LG Twins) and Park Chan-ho (KIA Tigers) each received a trophy.

At the Golden Globe Awards held on the 11th, the winner was divided by the smallest margin of votes among the 10 categories this year. Oh Ji-hwan, who received 154 votes, beat Chan-ho Park, who received 120 votes, by 34 votes.

Oh Ji-hwan, who held the Golden Gloves for two consecutive years, was more cautious than relieved. Oh Ji-hwan said, “The younger kids are coming up, so I have to show them that I am competitive. Since I am an athlete, I have no choice but to prove my skills.”

This is because the growth of other players is so unusual that even though he is recognized as the best shortstop, he cannot let his guard down.

Park Chan-ho, who threatened Oh Ji-hwan at this year’s Golden Glove Awards, recorded a batting average of 0.301, 3 home runs, 52 RBIs, 73 runs, and 30 stolen bases in 130 games this year. He played his role in a stable manner in defense as well.

I was even more motivated by finishing in second place at the Golden Globe Awards, which I had high hopes for. Chan-Ho Park expressed his motivation, saying, “I want to win the Golden Glove at least once in my baseball career.”

It’s not just Chan-ho Park. The growth of young shortstops such as NC Dinos’ Kim Joo-won, SSG Landers’ Park Seong-han, and Samsung Lions’ Lee Jae-hyun is also showing remarkable growth.

Kim Joo-won, who is evaluated to have grown further through the 2022 Hangzhou Asian Games, was also selected as one of the best 9 players at the Asian Professional Baseball Championship (APBC) for his solid defense and batting skills.

Here, there is also a ‘proven competitor’ that has not been seen in the past two years. This is Kiwoom Heroes second baseman Kim Hye-seong.

Kim Hye-seong, whose main position was initially shortstop, won the 2021 Golden Glove in the shortstop category ahead of Oh Ji-hwan. However, she later changed her position to second base due to team circumstances and was briefly out of the competition for shortstop.

Hye-Sung Kim, who won the Golden Glove at second base for her second consecutive year, is preparing to return to her natural position at shortstop next year.

Oh Ji-hwan said of Kim Hye-seong, “They say she will come back as a shortstop, so I think she will have to prepare better next year. “I think I have a greater sense of purpose,” he cautioned.

The invisible war for them to win the Golden Glove in the shortstop category, the flower of infield defense, has already begun. 스포츠토토맨



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