“I want to say thank you very much.”
The South Korean national baseball team, led by Ryu Jung-il, lost 3-4 in extra innings to Japan in the final game of the Kanext Asia Professional Baseball Championship (APBC) 2023 at the Tokyo Dome in Tokyo, Japan, on Monday.
Kim Hye-sung, the team’s captain, started at first base and batted second, as he had in the three group games. She ended up with a multi-hit game, going 1-for-3 with a hit and a walk. For the tournament, Kim’s numbers are 4-for-4 with one home run, three RBI, three runs scored, one triple, one stolen base, a .267 OPS and a .656 slugging percentage.
After the game against Japan, Kim Hye-sung met with the media in the mixed zone (joint press area) and said, “I’m very disappointed with the result. I’m disappointed because I’m the captain and I don’t think I did a good job as a leadoff hitter, but I saw the juniors do so well. I just need to do better,” she said.
She also expressed her disappointment with her offense more than her defense. Kim Hye-sung said, “My defense was fine, but I was disappointed in my batting. Being the leadoff hitter doesn’t mean you can get all the runs, but I wanted to create more chances, which was disappointing. We need to hit well overall. We need to score runs, and that’s why I’m disappointed,” she said, adding, “Everyone knows that, so we need to work hard to improve.”
Ryu praised the role of “captain” Kim Hye-sung during the tournament. He said Kim set the tone for the team. Kim has been the captain since the 2022 Hangzhou Asian Games in Hangzhou, China, last October.
However, Kim said, “I don’t think I led the team. The juniors followed me so well in such a short time. When I said something, they listened and behaved well. I’m very grateful.” She humbly responded.
Kim Hye-sung said she had one thing she wanted to say the most. Pitcher Lee Byung-hun (Doosan Bears), pitcher Kim Tae-kyung (Managing Director-NC Dinos), catcher Heo In-seo (Managing Director-Hanwha Eagles), and infielder Han Tae-yang (Managing Director-Lotte Giants) didn’t make the final roster, but they traveled to Tokyo to train with the team and cheer them on from the dugout. 보스토토 도메인
“The most important thing I want to say is that I’m really grateful to my friends who didn’t make the roster,” said Kim Hye-sung. “I had four friends who didn’t make the roster, and I’m sure they would have been upset, but I want to tell them that I’m really grateful and appreciative of the way they helped the team when they worked out without showing it.”