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Na Sung-bum attempts to make it to the big league

Posted November. 26, 2020 08:08,   

Updated November. 26, 2020 08:08


NC Dinos’ franchise star Na Sung-bum, who has played for the team since its foundation, kept his words. After leading his team to its first Korea Series (KS) victory by hitting a batting average of 0.458 with one home run and six RBIs, he now aims to move to Major League Baseball (MLB) with a light heart. He will attempt to make it to the big league via posting.

The market is also paying attention to the NC outfielder. Na has expressed his willingness to play in the MLB and has already hired super-agent Scott Boras, who helped Ryu Hyun-jin get into the big league. MLB clubs have already completed their basic analysis of Na’s capabilities. Na’s sincerity and drive to win revealed during the KS are also receiving good reviews. “Clubs are having difficulties checking out the skills of promising young athletes since the Minor League Baseball cancelled the season amid the COVID-19 pandemic. Korean players, who played the season this year, can have some advantage,” said Song Jae-woo, a sports commentator for MBC SportsPlus.

Na, who finished the season with a batting average of 0.324, 34 home-runs, and 112 RBIs, is also recognized as having power as well as a keen eye for the ball. But the right knee injury he suffered last season and a high strikeout rate are considered his weaknesses. “Contract conditions are, of course, important, but choosing a team that gives him many chances to play is what matters the most,” said Song.

Kiwoom Heroes’ shortstop Kim Ha-seong is also drawing the attention of MLB clubs. He has begun the formal procedure required to enter the big league with his team asking the office of Korea Baseball Organizations (KBO) to post him for MLB on Tuesday. Kim’s biggest strength is his ability to serve as a utility player, who can play as a second and a third baseman as well as a shortstop, at a young age of 25. It was predicted by the U.S. media that Kim would sign a five-year 40-million contract with either Texas or Detroit.

Other Korean players including free agent pitcher Yang Hyeong-jong (KIA) and Doosan outfielder Kim Jae-hwan, who failed to sign a major league deal last year, are expected to try to make it to MLB. It is a shame that both players have shown lackluster performance this season. The KBO open market has opened as well. The KBO released the list of 25 free agents on Wednesday. Doosan infielder Heo Kyong-min is considered the biggest name on the market.

Hong-Gu Kang windup@donga.com