“I’m probably most proud of Bae Ji-hwan (24, Pittsburgh Pirates).”
Pittsburgh coach Derek Shelton spent time this spring developing Bae Ji-hwan into a big leaguer. I was convinced that Bae Ji-hwan’s bunt ability was a talent possessed by very few in the major leagues. Coach Shelton is satisfied with Bae Ji-hwan, who devoted himself to training throughout the spring camp, and achieved results in the major leagues from the beginning of the season.스포츠토토
On the 10th (Korean time), the American sports media ‘The Athletic’ picked Bae Ji-hwan as the hottest person in Pittsburgh. Bae Ji-hwan is leading Pittsburgh’s ‘Small Ball’. The media emphasized that it was ‘Director Shelton’s favorite bunt game by Bae Ji-hwan’.
Manager Shelton said, “We made it really hard for Bae Ji-hwan from spring camp. We told him, ‘You have a talent that only a few have, so let’s use that talent.’ He actually used that talent to his advantage at the beginning of the season. He used it well and did it successfully. I’m probably most proud of him for that.”
The Athletic said, ‘In the match against the White Sox on the 8th, Bae Ji-hwan started as the lead batter in the 4th inning and reached base with a bunt hit, laying the foundation for a 4-run big inning. Four of the seven hits Bae Ji-hwan hit at the beginning of the season were hits that didn’t escape the infield,’ he explained.
Bae Ji-hwan is expected to become the icon of the small ball that Pittsburgh is pursuing this season. For young players playing in the Pittsburgh minor leagues, Bae Ji-hwan is a good role model to explain the direction of the team.
The Athletic said: ‘Pittsburgh is expected to use bunts more often this season. “Management has been working hard to get players in the minor leagues to embrace the small-ball mindset, but it’s not always easy.”
“Sometimes it’s hard to tell good hitters to play small ball,” manager Shelton said. It’s a way to keep them in the big leagues.’ Then those words are perceived completely differently by the players.”
In fact, Bae Ji-hwan faithfully followed the direction the club wanted throughout the spring camp. And 5 years after signing a minor league contract with Pittsburgh in 2018, he had the honor of being named to the big league opening roster. Bae Ji-hwan continues to maintain his big league life, recording a batting average of 0.250 (7 hits in 28 at-bats), an OPS of 0.705, 1 home run, 2 stolen bases, 3 RBIs and 5 runs in 8 games. Shortstop, second baseman, and center fielder, he plays in any position the team wants, and he is gradually making his place in the big leagues while hitting according to the direction of the team.