The Lotte Giants, ahead of spring, are particularly rosy this year.
This is because the promising players nurtured with a long-term vision are gradually seeing the light, and the positions of catcher and shortstop, which were considered the team’s biggest weaknesses, have been filled with A-class free agents, Yoo Gang-nam and Noh Jin-hyeok. Han Hyun-hee was added to the starting pitcher.
Noh Jin-hyeok at the Guam camp is quickly adapting to the team. He has already transformed into a ‘Lotte hacker’ to the extent that there is talk of him standing at the center of team chemistry.
However, such anticipation is also a considerable burden for Noh Jin-hyeok (34). After meeting him on the 12th, he revealed his aspirations, “This year’s goal is a double-digit home run and an OPS (on-base percentage + slugging percentage) of 0.800 or higher.” Then he laughed, saying, “I don’t want to hear the words ‘5 billion eating and running’. I’m working hard. It’s a problem because the wall of resignation is high…”
“I think the keyword for Lotte this year is ‘defense’. A man who is as strict as he is when defending. This is my heart. I don’t want to see people making mistakes and throwing poorly because it’s practice. When I’m resting, won’t (Lee) Hak-joo or (Park) Seung-wook fill in my place?
This year’s Lotte Camp is especially hot. Training coach Kim Hyun-wook’s meticulous yet vigorous conditioning is making green onion kimchi for both pitchers and batters. Players stick out their tongues, saying, “The word is conditioning, it’s hell training.”
Noh Jin-hyeok said, “It was really hard at first, but now I’m used to it. I’m having fun.” 안전놀이터
He became friendly with Kim Min-soo, who came with him as he came to the starting team. Thanks to Min-soo Kim, who is ‘talkative’, he also expressed his gratitude that he learned about the rules within the Lotte team and easily melted into it. He said that he recently became very close with Jung Hoon, Han Dong-hee, and Lee Hak-joo. Even though he is a senior, he participates in early work and volunteers for extra training in defense, so he is determined not to lose his momentum.
‘Shortstop’ Noh Jin-hyeok’s positioning, stability, and range are recognized by everyone. However, it is pointed out that the defensive range is narrow for a shortstop and the footwork is not as agile. Concerns about the back injury he suffered in the past also follow.
When the story of defense came out, Noh Jin-hyeok thought of ‘gift’. Lee Dong-wook is the former head coach of the NC Dinos. Noh Jin-hyeok was a founding member of NC and a franchise star until he changed into a Lotte uniform.
“I learned how to select positions when coach Lee Dong-wook was a defensive coach. The secret to making a living as a shortstop so far is to look at the pitcher’s sign, hitter’s propensity and swing, and predict where the ball will go. Recently, it has started to become more evident. .. I think that’s my strong point on a shortstop defense. The momentary range isn’t huge, but you’ll probably see it cover a lot more than you think.”