“If only my physical condition had been normal… ”
NC coach Kang In-kwon commented on veteran infielder Park Seok-min (38), who announced his retirement this morning ahead of the game against KT Wiz in the first leg of the ‘2023 Shinhan Bank SOL KBO League’ postseason playoffs held at KT Wiz Park in Suwon on the 30th. He expressed his thoughts.
After graduating from Daegu High School, Park Seok-min joined Samsung as a first round pick in the 2004 KBO rookie draft. After the 2015 season, he signed a four-year free agent contract with NC for a total of 9.6 billion won and became a member of the Dinos. He qualified as a free agent again at the end of the 2020 season and then re-signed for 2+1 years for up to 3.4 billion won.
Park Seok-min played in a total of 1,697 games over a total of 18 seasons, with a batting average of .2087, 269 home runs, 1,041 RBI, an on-base percentage of .402, a slugging percentage of .491, an OPS of .893, and holds the record for the most RBIs (9 RBIs) by an individual in a single KBO regular season game. .
Additionally, in the 2020 season, he was a key player on the team and led NC to its first overall championship since its founding. He left a distinct mark as a top player representing the league, including being a member of the WBC national team in 2017, winning the Korean Series 6 times, winning the Golden Glove twice (2014, 2015), being the playoff MVP in the 2016 season, and ranking first in on-base percentage in the 2020 season.
On the other hand, he also had a dark side. In July 2021, Park Seok-min caused a stir by violating COVID-19 quarantine rules (no gatherings of 5 or more people) at the away accommodation. At the time, he caused a stir at the away accommodation with Park Min-woo, Kwon Hee-dong, Lee Myung-ki, and others. Due to their presence, a group infection of COVID-19 occurred in NC and Doosan, the opposing team at the time, and a large number of close contacts came out, creating an unprecedented situation in which the season was suspended. Afterwards, he was accused of making a false statement during the epidemiological investigation, but he was not found to be guilty and was not indicted, and the suspicion of making a false statement was completely removed.
After his second free agent contract ended, Park Seok-min set his sights on Baek Eui-jong with an annual salary of 50 million won this year. It was a 93% reduction from the previous year’s annual salary of 700 million won. Manager Kang In-kwon also respected Park Seok-min’s will to join the team and gave trust to the veteran by having him play as the starting third baseman in the opening game.
However, he was unable to perform at his normal condition this year due to minor injuries to his back, neck, and hamstrings, and eventually announced his retirement from active duty. He ended the season with a batting average of .1093 (17 hits in 88 at-bats), 1 home run, 8 RBIs, and an OPS of .560 in 30 games. In the end, July 25th became the last game of this year’s regular season. The most recent match in the Futures League was on June 3rd.
Before the game that day, Coach Kang In-kwon said, “We met and talked about it towards the end of the season. I felt like the player himself would have a lot of regrets. So, I asked Park Seok-min about his current physical condition, and he seemed to be not returning to normal condition as well as I thought카지노사이트,” he said, expressing his regret, saying, “I had no choice but to respect the player’s opinion.”
What would it have been like if Park Seok-min had recovered to his normal condition? Director Kang In-kwon had plans to use Park Seok-min. Coach Kang In-kwon said, “If his physical condition had been normal, he would have tried to give Park Seok-min a good finish at the end of the season or when he entered the postseason. However, since Park Seok-min’s body has not returned to normal, he wants to respect the player’s opinion,” he explained.
In addition, he said, “I think he will have a good time in his second life as he has always enjoyed playing baseball,” and he also supported Park Seok-min’s life after his retirement.