Pohang’s 3rd match during the week ‘50% fierce’… Koo Ja-wook, the first ‘hitting king’ challenge in his life, why not?

 The pace of Samsung Lions’ Koo Ja-wook is unusual. The challenge for the first hitting king in his life seems quite possible.

Ja-wook Koo showed off his heightened sense of hitting by recording 7 hits in 13 at bats with a batting average of 0.538 and 3 RBIs in three consecutive weekday matches against the KIA Tigers in the 2023 Shinhan Bank SOL KBO League held at Pohang Baseball Stadium on the 1st to 3rd. In particular, in the games on the 2nd and 3rd, he harassed the KIA mound by performing 3 hits in 2 consecutive games. The team, which ended with 1 win and 2 losses in 3 games, finished 3 consecutive matches during the week with a losing series, but once again confirmed the presence of Ja-wook Koo.

Up until the beginning of the season, Ja-wook Koo’s performance did not stand out much. During the month of April, he recorded 31 hits in 93 at-bats in 24 games with a batting average of 0.333, 2 home runs and 12 RBIs, but suffered from sluggishness with 19 hits in 79 at-bats in 22 games in May with a batting average of 0.241, 1 home run and 12 RBIs.

In June, it seemed to be successful in rebounding, but this time, an injury got in the way. Ja-wook Koo suffered a right hamstring injury during an away game against the Daejeon Hanwha Eagles on June 3 and was sidelined for a month. It was hopeful news for the team and the player himself that he returned before the end of the first half while showing a faster-than-expected recovery.

More than anyone else, the player himself regretted the injury, and Ja-wook Koo wanted to make up for it. Starting with the match against Doosan Bears in Pohang on the 6th of last month, the first half ended with a hit in 5 consecutive games, followed by the match against KT Wiz in Daegu on the 22nd and the match against KIA on August 3rd. Ja-wook Koo’s performance in the second half was 22 hits in 51 at-bats in 12 games, a batting average of 0.431, 1 home run and 14 RBIs.

With the addition of Ja-wook Koo, the team also gained momentum. For a month since his comeback match against Doosan on July 4, Samsung had 9 wins, 1 draw and 9 losses in 19 games, with a winning rate of exactly 50%. Looking at the second half alone, it is recording the fourth highest win rate along with NC Dinos with 6 wins, 1 draw and 5 losses (0.545). In particular, the Samsung team’s batting average reached 0.335 in the second half, and not only Koo Ja-wook, but also Kim Seong-yoon, Kim Hyeon-jun, and Kang Min-ho, etc., are exerting their strength.

If Koo Ja-wook, who entered the regulation at-bat, maintains his current pace, it is worth aiming for the batting king. He is running fourth in the batting average, behind Son Ah-seop (0.332), Guillermo Heredia (0.332), and Yang Eui-ui (0.327). In 2021, he became the title holder in this category with 107 points, but the year Ja-wook Koo ranked highest in the batting average was 3rd place (0.349) in 2015. There has never been a season in which he became the batting champion.꽁머니

In particular, Ja-wook Koo, who has not been able to compete for a month, has an advantage in terms of physical strength compared to players who have competed in the past. I wonder how the competition for batting title, sparked by the addition of Ja-wook Koo, will go on.

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