He is the most forward-looking player among young shortstops in Korea.”
The No. 1 shortstop in the KBO League is definitely Oh Ji-hwan (LG). He is in a situation where Park Seong-han (SSG) and Park Chan-ho (KIA) are fighting over the second factor. In the midst of this, there are signs that the generational change of shortstops will become active. There are veterans such as KT Kim Sang-su and Lotte Roh Jin-hyuk, but young shortstops such as Samsung Lee Jae-hyun and Doosan Ahn Jae-seok are also ready to raise their name value.
Among young shortstops, there is a player who stands out in NC. This is Kim Joo-won, a 21-year-old switch hitter. Kim Joo-won graduated from Yushin High School and joined in 2021 in the 6th place in the 2nd round of the 1st round. NC gave Kim Joo-won a chance of 69 games even in a messy situation related to the violation of the Corona 19 quarantine rules at the time. 스포츠토토
Kim Joo-won drove the momentum and played 96 games last year. His performance was 0.223 with 10 homers, 47 RBIs, 35 runs scored, and 10 stolen bases for an OPS of 0.719. His numbers are not outstanding, but it is noticeable that his second year of high school achieved 10 home runs and 10 stolen bases at the same time. He has good athletic ability, so it is evaluated that the possibility of growing into a hotta junjok is infinite. He’s also a switch-hitter, which he rarely has these days. It takes twice as much effort and energy consumption than others, but neither Kim Joo-won nor NC has any intention of giving up. 스포츠토토
Starting from the second half of last year, Kim Joo-won has firmly established himself as the starting shortstop. He will challenge full-time shortstop this season unless there is an incident. If you experience this once, you can guess at what point and to what level his potential will burst.
Park Seong-han is a shortstop who has followed a path similar to Kim Joo-won. When Park Seong-han also returned from military service in 2020, SSG was in a slump due to a line injury and poor grades. At that time, Park Seong-han showed his ability without any burden, and his momentum blossomed as a full-time shortstop for two consecutive years. Kim Joo-won can also follow this route.
National team-level second baseman Park Min-woo, who boasts 6th overall batting average, said of Kim Joo-won at the New Year’s party on the 16th, “Unlike a young player, his mentality is good.” It means that even if you make a mistake in defense, you will not be intimidated and will quickly recover your mentality. This is a very important factor for inexperienced prospects.
Expectations from director Kang In-kwon are also high. On the 29th, ahead of his departure for spring camp, “The shortstop will focus on Kim Joo-won. Based on the experience of last year and the year before, we must grow one step further. He is a player who can play his part in every part. He has all the good things, including speed, slugging power, and defense. He only needs to supplement the contact a little more.”
It means that detailed hitting technique upgrade is needed to raise the average. Experience must be accumulated, and side effects must be overcome. He still has a long way to go, but his potential is extraordinary. Coach Kang said, “Kim Joo-won is the most forward-looking young shortstop in Korea.”