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Park Jae-Hong aims for 40-40

Posted July. 18, 2000 21:16,   


The 20-20 club blessed with `Strong Bats, Fast Feet`

Until last year, this record was only reached 22 times.

Normally, a batter who is quick on his feet lacks power, and those who can hit balls out of the park are often slow. Possessing both power and speed is a rare blessing.

In Korean baseball there have only been 5 players who have joined the 30-30 club, including Lee Jong-Beom (formerly with Haitai) and Lee Byung-Kyu (LG). Of these 5 players, only Park Jae-Hong has been able to reach the 30-30 mark twice. He accomplished the feat once as a rookie and for the second time in 1998.

Park is now eyeing his third title. As of the 17th, he had 25 home runs and 20 steals, and it seems that reaching 30-30 is only a matter of time. What Park is actually aiming for is to be the first 40-40 clubber.

Given his performance so far, this is certainly attainable. He is averaging 0.29 home runs per game, meaning he can hit 38 homers if he stays healthy for the remainder of the season. As for steals, he is recording 0.26 a game, indicating his tally at season`s end will be 34.

As one can steal anytime he gets on base, 40 steals seem within reach. In the end, Park`s home run performance will be the key to reaching the 40-40 mark.

One obstacle is the potential postponement of the pennant race. As Park has been selected to the Sydney Olympic `Dream Team`, if the season plays on during the Olympic period, his chances of achieving the 40-40 goal will be slim.