“We’ll talk about it when we have five games left.”
For the third time in his professional career, NC Son Ah-seop (35) is trying to win the batting title, but this time he’s cautious.
After five days, Son is batting .331, second in the league behind SSG Guillermo Heredia (0.332). Their batting averages are only one run apart, a gap that could be closed quickly. To make matters worse, Heredia has been out of the lineup for the past four days with a strained anterior left thigh muscle. He is expected to be out for about four weeks.
Son has missed out on the batting title twice before. In 2013, he lost the batting title by three runs to Lee Byung-kyu, who was playing for LG at the time and is now the head coach of Samsung, with a batting average of 0.345.
After losing his first challenge, Son realized that he had to seize the opportunity when it was right in front of him. He even thanked Lee at the award ceremony, saying, “Thank you, Lee Byung-kyu.” He couldn’t help but feel disappointed.
The second challenge was just as close. Son hit .352 in 2020, but Kia’s Choi Hyung-woo took the title with a .354 average.
Sohn is back for a third time. His previous two attempts were with Lotte, but now he’s looking to make his first history in an NC uniform. This time around, he’s determined to be more cautious, which is why he’s trying to avoid mentioning the batting champion as much as possible.
“When I was interviewed about the batting champion, I suddenly stopped hitting after that,” he explained.
He went hitless for 29-30 days last month and didn’t produce a hit for two consecutive games as he started to think about the “batting champion”.먹튀검증
He then decided to clear his mind again, saying, “I have to stop thinking about it.”
The change in mindset paid off, as Son started August with a bang. He had more than two hits per game against Lotte from July 1-3. His batting average in August is 0.381 in five games.
The batting title race is likely to continue until the end of the season. For the first time in his career, Son will be able to smile at the top of the batting order at the end of the season. NC will need to continue its hitting streak if it wants to stay in the race for the top four.