A former stolen base king catches fire.
Just as some players are scary when they step up to the plate, there are others who become menacing the moment they get on base. A runner who can steal a base at any time is a headache for opponents. It’s a three-way battle for the title of best batting average this season.
The current race leader is LG’s “Cinderella” Shin Min-jae, who has 30 stolen bases as of day 6. Shin used to specialize in pinch-hitting, but stepped up her game in the field and became a regular second baseman this year. As his playing time increased, so did his stealing chances.
Combined with LG manager Yoon Kyung-yeop’s aggressive approach to stealing bases, he has a 30.9% (42/136) stolen base rate. This is the highest among hitters with more than 200 at-bats. It’s a far cry from second-place Kim Do-young (KIA-20.7%). With a 71.4% success rate, he is on track to reach the 30-steal plateau by himself. At this rate, he could reach the 30-steal mark for the first time in his career.
There are two chasers behind him. First is the defending champion Park Chan-ho (KIA). Last year, he surpassed Kim Hye-sung (Kiwoom) with 41 stolen bases. This year, he’s on pace for a career-high and is a favorite for the Golden Glove at shortstop, with 27 stolen bases.
She stole 10 bases in the second half, fueled by the confidence she gained with her revitalized bat. His .454 on-base percentage (second-best in the second half) increased his stolen base opportunities. With this momentum, he is on target to win the stolen base title for the third time in his career after 2019 (39 stolen bases) and 2022.
The second chaser is Doosan’s veteran center fielder, Jung Soo-bin, who has defied his age. He is known for his “super catches” in the outfield with his quick feet, but he has also been consistent in stealing bases. With the exception of 2018, when he joined the Police Baseball Organization midseason, he has accumulated double-digit stolen bases in each of the past 12 seasons.스포츠토토
However, he has never been a stolen base champion. He lost out to Kim Sang-soo (then of Samsung – 53 stolen bases) in 2014, when he stole a career-high 32 bases, and to teammate Oh Jae-won (46 bases) in 2011, when he stole 31 bases. This year, at the age of 33, he threw down the gauntlet. He has the highest stolen base success rate (87.1%) compared to his competitors, so he will aim to win his first title with his speed and age.