San Diego Padres infielder Kim Ha-seong has already reached his third year in the major leagues. If he was appointed as an infield utility backup in 2021, last year he was also named among the three final candidates for the National League shortstop Gold Glove as the main shortstop to fill the gap left by Fernando Tatis Jr.
Last year, he made his name known to fans with his stable and splendid defense and the impact of one RBI and double hit in the 7th inning of the 4th game that brought victory in the National League Division Series. The fact that there are more nicknames for Kim Ha-seong, such as ‘Awesome Kim’, ‘Kim Cha-do’, and ‘King Ha-seong’, proves the fans’ interest in him.
On the 21st (Korean time), Kim Ha-seong visited the Peoria Sports Complex in Peoria, Arizona, USA where he is training. Even though local time is Monday, many fans came to the campsite to see San Diego’s spring training. Excluding the restricted areas, they followed the players’ movements and went around the campsite asking for autographs.
While the reporter was waiting for Kim Ha-seong in the middle, I heard a voice saying “Please sign me” in a small voice from somewhere. I hurriedly turned my head to see a boy fan practicing “Kim, please sign me” with his younger brother. At his side, his mother even corrected her pronunciation. 토토사이트
When I said, “Your pronunciation is correct,” he smiled shyly and nodded. Clay, an 11-year-old boy who came from San Diego to watch the players train with his family, said he is a “camp regular” who comes to the Peoria Sports Complex every year. Clay said, “I’m a fan of Ha-seong Kim. I really want to get an autograph today, but I don’t know if I can get one.”
When asked, “Why do you like Kim Ha-seong?” he replied, “Because he is a really good player.” His mother added, “Clay likes players who play hard. He put a photo card on his notebook because he wanted to get Kim Ha-sung’s autograph.” Clay received a call from his father, who was elsewhere, saying, “Austin Nola is signing autographs on the way home from work,” but he gave up to wait for Kim Ha-seong.
Clay shouted “Kim! Please sign me!” However, Kim Ha-seong was unable to sign autographs for many fans as he had to move quickly to practice batting balls. Manny Machado, who was training in a pair with Kim Ha-seong, also received autograph requests from numerous fans, but left a handshake and ran, saying, “I have one more training left. I’ll do it later.” Clay regretted it for a while, but he didn’t give up and left with his family for another ‘autograph spot’.
In addition to Clay, many fans know Ha-seong Kim’s name and applaud his play. Kim Ha-seong told reporters, “Korean fans are really passionate about their support, but it was cool and impressive to see the major leagues only fill the home crowd during home games,” revealing that he was deeply impressed by major league fans.