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Ahn Chi-hong: 'For Hanwha, I can play any infield position’

Ahn Chi-hong: 'For Hanwha, I can play any infield position’

Posted December. 09, 2023 09:29,   

Updated December. 09, 2023 09:29


“Any position is possible.” Ahn Chi-hong, who secured his status as a professional baseball free agent (FA) and moved from Lotte to Hanwha, made this statement during his initial meeting with Hanwha coach Choi Won-ho. “You never know what might unfold once the season kicks off,” Ahn remarked. “For the team, I am capable of playing not only as a second baseman and first baseman but also as a third baseman and shortstop.”

Ahn excelled as a top-class shortstop during his high school baseball days at Seoul High School. However, in his professional career, he primarily played as a second baseman, earning the Golden Glove Award in 2011, 2017, and 2018. During the 2018 Jakarta-Palembang Asian Games, Ahn demonstrated his versatility by playing at third base, contributing to Korea's third consecutive victory in the tournament. Over the past two seasons, he has seen an uptick in games played as a first baseman.

Ahn Chi-hong inked a deal with Hanwha under the agreement of receiving a total of 7.2 billion won over a contract period of up to six years. “I've never had an MVP-level season. Instead, I take pride in consistently delivering strong performances each year,” he said. “I've always played baseball without any gimmicks, and Hanwha highly values this aspect of my game. I've heard that Hanwha is in need of a baseball attitude like mine.”

After completing his military service, Ahn achieved an impressive performance in 2017, boasting a batting average of 0.316 along with 21 home runs and 93 RBIs. His contributions played a pivotal role in leading Kia, his team at that time, to clinch both the regular season and the Korean Series. This marked his second championship victory, the first being in 2009 during his rookie year.