It can only be done without Kim Ha-seong, SD coach “You have to look at the shortstop and third base as well”
When the San Diego Padres brought in free agent shortstop Zander Bogarts in December of last year, it was said that they had spent money unnecessarily when they had two solid shortstops.
Ha-seong Kim, who ranked second in the Gold Glove vote last season, is alive and well, and Fernando Tatis, the home run king in 2021, is also returning at the end of April, so why did he spend 11 years and $280 million? AJ Preller’s answer to this question was simple. Since Bogatz is the shortstop, Ha-seong Kim moved to second base, and the existing second baseman Jake Cronenworth said that he could move to first base.
At first glance, it seems like a neat solution, but even though the opening of spring training is 10 days away, San Diego’s infield and outfield are not clearly organized. Moreover, third baseman Manny Machado can exercise an opt-out after this season, so it is essential to organize positions according to a mid- to long-term plan.
On the 9th (Korean time), MLB.com shed light on San Diego’s defensive situation in an article titled ‘Three things we know and don’t know about the Padres defense’.
At the fanfest held last weekend, when the ‘Big 4’ that San Diego boasts, namely Bogatz, Machado, Tatis, and Juan Soto, stood on one stage, MLB.com said, ‘No one knows who plays which position on the defense. He said, “I asked Cronenworth, and he said that he had chosen the wrong person to answer, and Tatis was reluctant to ask our director.”
Manager Bob Melvin told the local media, “I talked to our players, and they have a great will to win. They know there will be some changes in the defense this year.”
MLB.com lists ‘three things we know’: ‘Bogatz is being used as a shortstop’, ‘Ha-seong Kim moves to second base, but is also training shortstop and third base’, and ‘Soto is willing to change positions’ The fact that there is ‘and so on. If Machado opts out after this season, the media predicts that next year, Bogatz will go to third base, and Kim Ha-seong or Tatis will take over as shortstop again.
Kim Hee-seong’s defensive training not only for second baseman, but also for shortstop and third baseman this offseason can be seen as related to the future of Machado. MLB.com said, ‘Currently, Kim Ha-seong is a proven infielder who can be seen anywhere, and he is training all three positions this offseason.’
Kim Ha-seong recently said, “I heard from the general manager that I will mainly play second base. But that is not all. During the season, I will have to be prepared for any position the manager orders.” As General Manager Preller and Manager Melvin, it is a role that can only be entrusted to Kim Ha-seong, an all-weather infielder.
Another thing, if Machado and Bogatz take a break or play as a designated hitter, Ha-seong Kim must be put in that position. Kim Ha-seong will play as the shortstop for the Korean national team in the World Baseball Classic.
Soto’s position shift presupposes Tatis’ transformation into an outfielder. Tatis can play from April 28, when the 80-game suspension is lifted. Tatis has a history of appearing in 24 games as an outfielder in 2021. However, considering Tatis’ strong shoulder and the wide right-middle of Petco Park, he is likely to be the right fielder. Soto needs to move to another position. 스포츠토토
In response, Soto said, “I don’t like going back and forth. If I play one position, I only look at that position. I think that’s important. If you start playing just one position, you focus all your attention on it and think about it. But that’s It doesn’t matter which position.” This means that once the position is decided, there is no intention of moving again. Soto was a left fielder in his early professional days.
MLB.com cited Tatis’ exact position, how to organize the outfield, and the possibility of future position changes for Cronenworth as ‘three things we don’t know’. In particular, in the case of Cronenworth, if Nelson Cruise, who came with a free agent contract, does his part, he can see second base again. Then, Ha-seong Kim’s position becomes ambiguous.