‘No. 1 in on-base percentage’ two years ago Now ‘No. 1 in batting average’… Hong Chang-gi “We won’t know until it’s over”

It is gradually evolving. LG Twins Hong Chang-ki aims to become the batting champion.

Hong Chang-gi started as the number one hitter and right fielder in the 2023 Shinhan Bank SOL KBO League home game against SSG Landers held at Jamsil Baseball Stadium in Seoul on the 16th. He performed well with 3 hits, 3 RBIs, and 3 runs scored in 5 at bats, leading the team to a 10-4 complete victory and 2 consecutive wins.

스포츠토토Thanks to his performance on this day, he was proudly ranked first in batting average in the league. The season batting average is 0.340 (154 hits in 453 at-bats). It is a slight difference from 2nd place Son Ah-seop (NC)’s 0.339 (158 hits in 466 at-bats). In addition, Hong Chang-gi ranked first in scoring (99 points), first in on-base percentage (0.454), second in scoring average (0.361), and third in hits.

In the bottom of the first inning, Hong Chang-gi created a chance to reach second base with a single and a stolen base. Afterwards, he homered on Kim Hyun-soo’s ground ball. It was a 1-0 lead. In the top of the 5th inning, he caught opponent Park Seong-han’s batted ball with a sliding catch and increased the count. It was perfect lake rain. In the bottom of the 5th inning, with 2 outs and 2 outs, the 2nd baseman produced a timely hit with 1 RBI. He gave the team a 2-0 lead.

The score was overturned to 3-4 after allowing 4 runs in the top of the 6th inning. Hong Chang-ki contributed to changing the atmosphere in the bottom of the 6th inning. He faced Ko Hyo-jun with the bases loaded and 2 outs. Although they were inferior with 0 hits in 7 at-bats, Hong Chang-gi hit a timely hit with 2 RBIs. 5-4, the comeback was successful. LG scored 4 points in the bottom of the 6th inning to go up 7-4.

Hong Chang-gi said, “I go to bat thinking that I will solve it when I have a chance to score. (Before the game with Ko Hyo-jun in the bottom of the 6th inning) The coach said, ‘First, set the timing for the fastball and hit the slider when it comes.'” He added, “The breaking ball is a bit off. “I think I got a hit as I was rushing in. It was really good. I didn’t know the opponent’s record,” he said with a smile. Hong Chang-gi targeted Ko Hyo-jun’s third pitch, a slider.

The feeling of hitting has been hot lately. In 12 games in September, he hit hard with a batting average of 0.478 (22 hits in 46 at-bats). He said, “It seemed to drop around the end of August, but it got better in September. There were no games for four consecutive days (11th to 14th) recently, so I took a break and it helped.”

Even immediately after the end of the game, he did not know that he had become number one in batting average. Hong Chang-gi said, “I think it happened because all the other stadiums didn’t play. I don’t know how it will change again.” When asked if he knew who his competitors were, he laughed and said, “I know. Everyone around me tells me without me having to look for it.”

Is there a desire to be the batting average king? He said, “I’m not thinking about it in particular. I don’t know the results until the end, so I’m going to try my best.” He added, “I met senior Park Yong-taek briefly today (the 16th), and he advised me, ‘You should do it when you can.’ “I think you have done well, so I will try to do better.”

He created a sensation by ranking first in on-base percentage (0.456) in 2021. Before I knew it, I had developed the image of a ‘solver who hits hard.’ Hong Chang-gi said, “Even before, I didn’t just wait for the ball. 

His defensive skills are also improving. The lake rain scene was shown several times, including this day. Hong Chang-gi said, “I think I have improved a little compared to before. There are many good outfielders on the team.” He added, “There are national team center fielders and left fielders like (Park) Hae-min and (Kim) Hyun-soo. I train with them, watch, listen, and learn.” “I feel like I’ve improved a lot,” he said with a humble attitude.

LG is on the verge of confirming first place in the regular league. They are currently leading the team with 72 wins, 2 draws, and 47 losses. They are 6 games behind 2nd place KT (67 wins, 3 draws, 54 losses). Hong Chang-gi raised his voice, saying, “The team atmosphere is really good. The older guys are good at guiding me, so the juniors can just follow along.”

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