“He stands out among the catchers in the top 10 clubs and has strong shoulders.”
Choi Kyung-cheol, the Lotte Giants battery coach who resigned on Sept. 9, couldn’t hide a smile after the end of the game against the LG Twins. While he was happy for his team’s 7-4 victory that moved them into sole possession of fourth place in the standings, it was the performance of starting catcher Son Sung-bin that brought a smile to his face.
Starting at the top of the order and batting eighth, Son went 1-for-3 with a home run, two RBIs, two runs scored, and a walk, and frustrated LG with his trademark toughness.
In particular, his accurate and quick throw to LG second baseman Oh Ji-hwan in the top of the sixth inning, when Lotte led 6-4, was enough to draw gasps.
Oh Ji-hwan took a big lead on Moon Bo-kyung’s hit to third base, but it was hard to tell from the head play. Son Sung-bin’s “laser fastball” shined.
In the top of the seventh inning, Son generously caught Moon Bo-kyung trying to steal second base on a full count when Shin Min-jae batted. Shin struck out swinging to end the inning, and the offense stalled, with LG not scoring until the ninth inning.
Son Sung-bin has maintained a 100 percent stolen base rate since returning from military service with the Sangsang in the middle of last month. While it’s true that he hasn’t had much playing time due to his position as a backup to mainstay catcher Yoo Kang-nam, he has shown strong shoulders by catching four consecutive stolen bases.
LG’s Moon Sung-joo said in an interview after the game against Jamsil Lotte on June 25, “I thought it was a safe play, so I started at first base and slid to second, but catcher Son Sung-bin’s throw was really fast and accurate. Even when I came into the dugout, my teammates said that they didn’t think I was going to get out,” he said, adding that he stuck his tongue out at Son’s ‘laser throw’.
Coach Choi Kyung-chul said, “Son throws a really strong fastball. He has a good shoulder, but I think he has the best (throwing) posture among domestic catchers.” “Dare I say, it’s not bad compared to his predecessors who were known as strong dogs in the past,” he praised.
He also said, “Son Sung-bin has a very good attitude in preparing for games. He works hard, but he also has pride in his strengths,” he said.
Son Sung-bin was overwhelmed by the outpouring of praise and humbled himself, saying that coach Choi Kyung-chul helped him a lot. He also credited the bench for helping him catch Oh Ji-hwan in the top of the fifth inning against LG Electronics on the 9th.
“I think the secret to a 100 percent stolen base rate is to keep training with Coach Choi Kyung-cheol before the game,” said Son. “Even in the fifth inning, he told me to think about throwing to second base if he didn’t bunt, so I was able to make the catch right away.”
“I think it’s better when you get a stolen base and the team doesn’t score and you get out of a jam than when you get a hit. It’s nice to be able to make the pitcher’s life a little easier.”
Both his pitch mix and pitching reads have also been praised for their improvement over the past two years as he has been playing regularly in the Futures League with the Sangsang. Since returning to Lotte after his discharge from the military, he has been studying in the dugout on days when he is not starting under coach Choi Kyung-cheol’s orders, taking notes on game situations.온라인카지노
“Coach Choi told me to think about the pitch mix in my mind as if I were sitting at home plate and compare it to Yoo Kang-nam’s lead, which is helping me a lot,” said Son. “I can also see the characteristics of opposing hitters better, and I’m learning a lot from watching Kang. I feel like I’m more focused when I’m watching the game,” he said.
Lotte manager Larry Sutton also has high hopes for Son. “He has the talent to play in the cleanup trio in the future. I think we can all agree that he’s going to be a big player in the future,” he said, adding, “He’s not only a good catcher, but he can improve in his batting as well.”