Without Ha-Sung Kim, would San Diego still have fall baseball hopes? It’s no wonder he’s an MVP candidate as he carries San Diego to victory.
Kim Ha-seong started at first base and went 2-for-4 with a grand slam (one home run), four RBIs and two runs scored in the Dodgers’ 2023 Major League Baseball home opener against the Miami Marlins at Petco Park in San Diego, California, on Sept. 22. He hit his first major league grand slam to lead the team to a 6-2 victory and was named the game’s undisputed hero.
Kim attacked Miami left-hander Ryan Weathers from the first pitch of the first inning. He took advantage of his former teammate, who was traded from San Diego to Miami at the trade deadline on Feb. 2, by driving a 96.5 mph (155.3 km/h) four-seam fastball up the middle for a double to right field.
He then stole third on a double steal (his 28th of the season) with Fernando Tatis Jr. on first base, and scored the go-ahead run on Manny Machado’s sacrifice fly to left field.
In the top of the second, he exploded for a home run. After a four-seam fastball out of the zone was called a strike, Kim was a little confused and looked at a changeup in the zone two pitches later. He worked himself into a two-strike disadvantage, but took the third pitch, a 96.6-mph (155.5-kilometer) four-seam fastball, on the body.
Weathers’ pitch was a no-doubter, a changeup that came in across the body of the plate, but Kim didn’t let that stop him from swinging and connecting for a grand slam over the left-field fence. It was measured at 95 mph (152.9 km/h), 359 feet (109.4 meters), and a 29-degree launch angle.
Kim’s home run, double, and stolen base were the first in San Diego’s 55-year franchise history. San Diego Radio Network broadcaster Sammy Levitt marveled, “Kim’s amazing season just keeps getting better and better.”
Behind Kim’s big hit, San Diego won 6-2. Once again, the Dodgers improved to 60-66. They are now 5.5 games back of the third wild card spot, San Francisco. They went 1-3 in a four-game series last week, including a doubleheader against the Arizona Diamondbacks, who are also in wild-card contention. Dropping both games of the doubleheader on the 20th hurt.
But Kim has kept San Diego’s hopes alive. With key players like Manny Machado, Fernando Tatis Jr. and Xander Bogaerts failing to deliver when it really counts, it’s safe to say that Juan Soto and Ha-Sung Kim are practically carrying the team. Considering that Kim is making $7 million this year, it’s safe to say that he’s filling the role of the aforementioned superstars.
“He’s been playing really well all season long,” manager Bob Melvin told the local media after the game, when asked about Kim’s performance this year, “just recently?” “He’s made a big leap in the leadoff spot. He’s become a hitter who can hit 20 home runs. He can hit the long ball and he’s getting on base well. He understands his role in the leadoff spot. Not to mention his defense. He has become a really important player.” Kim is now a key player for San Diego, a fact that his manager recognizes.카지노
MLB.com wrote, “When you think about where their season would be without him, it’s hard to overestimate his value to San Diego in 2023 at this point. He’s playing excellent defense at all three of the important infield spots and has a slash line of .280 (batting average)/.370 (on-base percentage)/449 (slugging percentage). He is currently San Diego’s most valuable player in bWAR and fWAR, and a top-five candidate for National League MVP,” explained the value of Kim.
“This year, Kim became a star by having his best season at second base. It would be hard to accept the offensive production of the rest of the current lineup if it meant wasting his best season,” he said, contrasting Kim’s performance with the team’s barely-contained fall baseball hopes.