SSG Landers’ Choi Ju-hwan (35) hit his first home run in 17 games. It was a shot that broke a long silence.
Choi went 1-for-4 with one home run, one walk, three RBIs and one run scored while batting fourth and playing second base in the 2023 Shinhan Bank SOL KBO League home game against the LG Twins at SSG Landers Field in Incheon at 6:30 p.m. on April 18.
This kept Choi’s season batting average at .243. However, despite Choi’s home run, SSG lost to LG 4-8.
In the first inning, SSG was stymied by LG starter Choi Won-tae. The SSG batting lineup was completely shut down by Choi until the third inning, failing to get a single hit.
However, the SSG bats broke out of their silence in the top of the fourth inning when leadoff hitter Choo Shin-soo singled for his first hit of the game. The next batter, Choi Ji-hoon, produced a strong hit toward second base. However, LG’s Shin Min-jae made a fantastic sliding catch and threw to second base. The first baseman, Choo Shin-soo, was thrown out at second base.
In the next at-bat, Choi Jeong-jeong was hit by a pitch. With runners on first and second, Choi Ju-hwan, the No. 4 hitter, pulled a fastball from Choi Won-tae for a towering three-run home run. It was Choi’s 17th home run of the season and his first in 17 games.
Choi was batting just .238 in the first half of the season. However, he showed exceptional long ball power with 14 home runs.
Choi suffered a sudden home run drought in the second half of the season. Prior to this game, he was batting .262 in the second half with improved contact but only two home runs. His last home run came on July 28 against the Hanwha Eagles.
With Choi’s long ball gone, SSG also struggled offensively. SSG’s team batting average in August is just .251 (8th) and their OPS (0.637) is the lowest in the league. They had just four home runs (10th).
The team was also in a downward spiral. Prior to this 토토사이트 game, SSG had gone 5-9 in the month of August. The gap between them and first-place LG had grown to seven games. They had to worry about catching up to third-place KT WIZ.
In this situation, the team’s main gun Choi Joo-hwan awakened and brought a small glimmer of hope to SSG, which was going through a rough patch with four straight losses.