San Diego Padres’ Ha-Sung Kim, 28, has become the National League’s winningest player.
Kim started at first base and went 메이저사이트 2-for-5 with a double and a stolen base against the Pittsburgh Pirates on Saturday at Petco Park in San Diego, California.
Kim, who is in his third year in the majors, has been on fire in the second half of the season, going 12-for-48 with four home runs, six RBIs and a 1.092 OPS in 17 games. For the season, he’s on pace for a career-high 97 games, batting .275 (88-for-323) with 14 homers, 37 RBIs and an .810 OPS.
After shifting from shortstop to second base when San Diego acquired Xander Bogaerts, Kim has remained consistent at second base, playing some of the best defense in the majors. According to Baseball Servant, the official statistical site of Major League Baseball, he ranks sixth in the majors in OAA (Outs Above Average), a defensive metric.
As he continues to excel on the offensive side of the ball, his ratings are rising. Recently, he began to lead the National League in Wins Above Replacement (bWAR) according to Baseball-Reference, an American baseball statistics site.
With his multi-hit performance, Kim finally passed Ronald Acuña Jr. (Atlanta, 5.0) for the National League lead in WAR (5.1). Below him on the list are Freddie Freeman (Dodgers, 4.6), Corey Seager (Texas, 4.6), Mookie Betts (Dodgers, 4.3), Matt Chapman (Toronto, 4.3), and Gerrit Cole (Yankees, 4.2).
Even if you expand the criteria to the entire major leagues, Kim comes in second. Currently, the only player with a higher WAR than Kim is Shohei Ohtani (Angels, 6.9), a two-hitting star. Oh has a lower WAR as a hitter (4.6), but his overall WAR is higher than Kim’s because he also has a 2.3 WRA as a pitcher.
Kim is putting together one of the best seasons of his career, and it’s important that he continues to perform well at the plate in order to maintain his current WAR ranking. Unlike his defense, which has always been good, with no ups and downs, since his major league debut, his hitting is having a career year. What’s more, he’s hitting better than ever in the second half of the season. If his hitting starts to cool off, his WAR ranking is bound to drop.
However, even if he can’t maintain his current performance, it’s hard to deny that Kim is putting together one of the best seasons by a Korean major leaguer. Fans are excited to see how he finishes the season, as he’s on pace to make Korean baseball history.