“The first team is so much fun. I want to stay for a long time.”
Hanwha Eagles rookie Moon Hyun-bin, 19, has been on the first-team roster since the start of spring training. Moving between second base and centre field, Hanwha is giving him experience. In 40 games, Moon is 2-for-23 (104 at-bats) with 11 RBI, two doubles, and a .549 OPS. It’s nothing to write home about, but the fact that an inexperienced rookie is staying on the first team roster in a season of two-game hitters speaks volumes about the expectations for Moon.
Moon’s position isn’t set in stone right now. His primary position is second base, but regular starter Jeong Eun-won is holding down the fort. Therefore, the team is using Jung Eun-won and Moon Hyun-bin at the same time and asking Moon Hyun-bin to play middle infield to utilise his strengths.
Hanwha coach Choi Won-ho said, “Moon Hyun-bin is better than Jeong Eun-won in terms of defensive range and throwing ability at second base. But you can’t ignore experience. Eun-won is better at pivoting and other parts of second base. Right now, Eun-won’s hitting skills are also better.”
However, he added, “Moon Hyun-bin has more power and range. I also asked him about his outfield defence, and he said that for a player who hasn’t played the outfield, he adapted quite quickly. So if he keeps going, I think he’ll be back on track soon,” he said, praising Moon’s senses.메이저놀이터
He added, “It’s not like we can take Jung Eun-won out of the lineup anyway, so let’s play Jung Eun-won at second base and Moon Hyun-bin in the middle infield.” “His ability to see the ball and make choices is good for his age. These players need to play consistently,” he said, explaining that they are worth developing.
Above all, he has shown many flashing scenes. On the 27th of this month, with the score at 1-0 against the Changwon NC, he hit a two-run single through the opponent’s forward defence on the second and third bases to lead the team to a 5-0 victory. Moon’s hit played a crucial role in setting the tone for the game.
It was a big hit for Moon. He is batting just 1-for-6 (4-for-25) with runners in scoring position this year. He has struck out six times. It was the advice of Chae Eun-sung, who signed as a free agent for six years and 9 billion won this year, that changed Moon’s tendencies. “I used to pick and choose a lot of pitches to hit only good pitches at every opportunity, and in the process, I struck out a lot. “But then Chae Eun-sung called me up and said, ‘If it’s in the strike zone, turn the bat, because if you just hit it, runners will come in anyway,’ so I turned the bat when I was in that situation, and I think it turned out well again,” he explained.
Listening to his seniors’ advice has helped him mature. “They tell me right away if I’m making a play that doesn’t fit the situation, so I think that helps,” he said, “and I think that’s why I’m playing more carefully and not making mistakes.”
“The first team is so much fun. I want to stay in the first team for a long time, and this experience is really valuable,” said Moon Hyun-bin. The future of Hanwha is tied to the growth of Moon Hyun-bin, who is favoured by both the club and the seniors who have moved on as free agents.