Lotte Giants’ Jeong-hoon Chung, 36, talked about the difficulties of being a top player and remembered Lotte legend Lee Dae-ho, who retired last year.
Jung-hoon started at first base in the No. 5 spot in the lineup against the Kiwoom Heroes in the 2023 Shinhan Bank SOL KBO League at Sajik Stadium in Busan on April 15, going 2-for-3 with a double, one RBI and two runs scored in Lotte’s 5-4 victory.
Jung-hoon, who surpassed the 1,000-hit plateau five days ago, is now batting .274 with 68 home runs, 468 RBIs and a .748 OPS in 1273 career games (3679-for-1008). He was honored at the game with a 1,000-hit ceremony.
“I don’t know about other players, but for me, it’s like a medal,” said Jung-hoon. “I think it’s a nice medal that I’ve earned through hard work. I don’t know how many more I can hit, but I hope it’s not the end,” he said, explaining the meaning of the 1,000-hit milestone.
“I reflected a lot while watching the award ceremony video,” Jung-hoon said, “I saw myself in the video and I worked really hard. I felt like I lost my focus and reflected on it. At that time, I was doing crazy things in a real baseball field with only one ball, but as I got older and became a veteran, I think it was different because I got to know baseball. I think veterans can set a good example for younger players by focusing on one ball and playing like crazy.”
Lotte retired franchise star Lee Dae-ho from active duty at the end of last season. Now, Jung-hoon is leading the younger players alongside Jeon Jun-woo (37) and Shin Jeong-rak (36) as the team’s most senior players. 토토사이트
“It’s a difficult position,” says Jung-hoon. Fans might think that because I’m a senior now, I don’t have to do anything, and I’m comfortable like a senior sergeant in the army. But when I became the most senior, I thought a lot about how lonely (Lee) Dae Ho Hyung must have been. Even if I’m the most senior, I’m a professional here, so I have to perform to a certain extent to set a standard for the juniors and lead the team. It’s not an easy position to be in,” he said.
“I think Dae Ho-hyung, who has been in this position for a long time, is really great,” said Jung Hoon, who admired Dae Ho-hyung, “I miss him because I’m the oldest, but on the other hand, he’s also great. Anyway, this year seems to be the year I miss Dae Ho Hyung a lot,” he laughed.