“It was a question when recruiting… I can’t imagine SD without the defensive wizard Kim Ha-seong” praised by the US media

Kim Ha-seong (28) was evaluated as an irreplaceable force for the San Diego Padres. Even at the time of recruitment two years ago, questions were raised over the recruitment of duplicate positions, but now his status has been upgraded as a player indispensable to the team. 스포츠토토

‘East Village Times’, a local media in San Diego, USA, on the 10th (Korean time) under the title of ‘Loved Defense Wizard’, ‘Ha-seong Kim is proving that he is a valuable member of San Diego. Now the entire baseball world is paying attention to him.” Ha-seong Kim tossed Charlie Blackman’s slow ground ball to first base with a glove in the 7th inning against the Colorado Rockies as a second baseman and caught an out. 

The media said, ‘When San Diego signed Kim Ha-seong ahead of the 2021 season, many people questioned the reason. This is because Kim Ha-seong was a player who was selected as an All-Star several times while playing almost a full-time shortstop in the KBO. San Diego had Fernando Tatis Jr. at shortstop,’ he explained. 

Then, Ha-seong Kim won the KBO League Golden Glove for three consecutive years from 2018 to 2020. Having settled down at the major league level, he is shining again with second base defense. Now, it is difficult to imagine San Diego without Kim Ha-seong,” he said, adding, “Kim Ha-seong, who is recording 15 DRS (Defensive Run Save), is leading all positions.” 

Continuing, the media said, ‘The next closest full-time second baseman is Andres Jimenez (Cleveland, 7), and Kim Ha-seong has more than twice the DRS of second place. In addition, OAA (Out Above Average) is 7, which is in the top 2%, leading among second basemen. With a defensive WAR of 1.8, Ha-seong Kim is one of the best defenders in all categories, leading the league. San Diego has benefited several times with his higher-level defense,’ he said. 

The media continued, ‘Kim Ha-seong always has a question mark about the bat. In the first year of 2021, his OPS .622 and adjusted OPS 73 were at the league average level, but his value became very high as he became an average level hitter based on Gold Glove level defense. His WAR ranks 10th among all players. He also noted his improvement in batting, saying, “From 2022, he has 208 games. He has a batting average of .712 OPS and an adjusted OPS of 106.” 

Furthermore, the media said, ‘If Ha-seong Kim maintains this appearance, winning the Gold Glove will not be the issue, but whether or not he will win the National League Platinum Glove will be the key. It is an award decided by fan voting, and Kim Ha-seong is loved by San Diego fans almost as a cult hero. He captivated fans with his hard-working attitude, solid defense, powerful swing despite his short stature, and contagious smile,’ said Kim Ha-sung’s fandom. 

The media continued, ‘In order for Kim Ha-seong to win the Platinum Glove he deserves, fans other than San Diego must pay attention. Nolan Arenado (St. Louis) with DRS -1 and dWAR 0.0 has no reason to receive this award again,” he emphasized. Arenado, who boasts the best third base defense in the major leagues, swept the National League Platinum Gloves for six consecutive years from 2017 to 2022. 

The Platinum Glove, hosted by the baseball equipment company ‘Rollings’, is given to one of the best defenders among the players selected for the Gold Glove in the two major leagues since 2011. Unlike the Gold Glove, which is selected for each position by adding 75% of the votes of managers and coaches and 25% of the SABR defense index, it is selected by fan voting and SABR index. 

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