What is the reason why outfielder Choi Seung-min (27), who has no record in the first team this season, was called up to the LG Twins?
On the 18th, LG announced that it had conducted a one-on-one trade between pitcher Ji-sun Chae and NC Dinos outfielder Seung-min Choi. LG carried out this trade by focusing on outfield depth reinforcement and NC bullpen reinforcement.
Choi Seung-min, who graduated from Shinil High School, joined NC as a foster player in 2015, and it was in 2019 that he made his first-team debut. Choi Seung-min played more than 40 games in the first team in 2021 and last year. His first-team career was 22 hits in 74 at-bats in 116 games, a batting average of 0.297, 5 RBIs and 16 stolen bases.
However, Choi Seung-min has played only in the Futures League without ever being in the first team since the start of this season. Choi Seung-min, who recorded 16 hits in 67 at-bats in 24 games and 6 RBIs with a batting average of 0.236, played the Futures League game even against the KIA Tigers on the 13th.
Considering LG’s outfield situation, it doesn’t seem easy for Choi Seung-min to become a starter right away. There are enough outfield resources that can be utilized in the first team, including veteran Kim Hyun-soo, Park Hae-min, Hong Chang-ki, and Moon Seong-ju안전놀이터.
In the end, Choi Seung-min needs his own strengths to survive. The hint is in the Futures League results. Choi Seung-min participated in 501 games in the Futures League, including during his time with the Sangmu Baseball Team (Army Sports Corps) in 2017-2018, and accumulated experience, scoring 461 hits in 1513 at-bats with a batting average of 0.305, 3 home runs and 141 RBIs.
What stands out in particular is the number of stolen bases. The number of stolen bases in the Futures League is 127, and in 2016, it reached 35. Choi Seung-min achieved double-digit steals every year from 2016 to 2020, and recorded 7 stolen bases in the first half alone this season. He was not in the first team stage, but he showed some quick feet.
There is a player with a similar image in LG. It is Shin Min-jae (27) who emerged as LG’s ‘hit product’ this season.
Shin Min-jae, who has expanded his position with his quick feet, was only an ordinary runner or defense agent until last year, but is running first in the league in this category with 21 stolen bases in the first half of this year alone. In addition to his stealing base, he is trusted by the first team coaching staff for his outstanding operational ability.
In particular, LG coach Yeom Gyeong-yeop pursued ‘running baseball’ from the beginning of the season, and as it matched Shin Min-jae’s play style, it appeared as a result. The reason why LG is expecting Choi Seung-min is similar. The LG club said, “Choi Seung-min is expected to be of great help to the team in the second half of the game and evaluates his ability to perform operations as a large runner with a quick focus.”
For players, this transfer can also be an opportunity for a reversal. However, the key is to prove your competitiveness in LG, where the depth of the beast is thick. Attention is focused on whether Choi Seung-min will be able to seize the opportunity that came to him.