Will LG Twins veteran catcher Heo Do-hwan (39) be able to collect one more ‘KS championship ring’?
Heo Do-hwan, the KBO League’s representative backup catcher and ‘journeyman’, is contributing greatly to the LG Twins’ dominance of first place this year. LG recruited Park Dong-won,메이저놀이터 who qualified as a free agent, and Park Dong-won is playing as the starting catcher, but Heo Do-hwan’s presence cannot be ignored.
LG achieved a 9-5 comeback win in the 15th game of the season, the second game of a double header, against SSG of the 2023 Shinhan Bank SOL KBO League held at Jamsil Stadium on the 17th. Heo Do-hwan also helped in this process.
With the team ahead 3-2 and with one out in the bottom of the 4th inning and no runners on base, he targeted SSG foreign left-handed starter Kirk McCarty’s 145 km/h fastball on the 3rd pitch and hit a solo home run over the left wall.
After Heo Do-hwan’s solo shot, LG scored 3 more points and took the win. LG succeeded in winning 4 games in a row and started to solidify first place. After the game, Heo Do-hwan said, “I feel good because the team won, and it’s even better because we won consecutively.”
Regarding the situation where he hit a home run, he looked back and said, “The pitcher is good at throwing fast balls toward the body, so I only thought about the fastball, and I thought it would go over the moment it was hit.”
Heo Do-hwan has a batting average of .155, 2 home runs, and 7 RBIs in 36 games this season until the SSG game. If you look at his performance alone, he may not be great, but he is something that LG needs this year. He is a player for whom batting performance is not everything.
He is a veteran who has experienced many hardships. He has experience winning, especially on big stages. For him, his first professional team was Doosan. He entered the professional stage after being nominated by Doosan in 2003. Afterwards, he came to LG via Nexen (now Kiwoom), Hanwha, SK (now SSG), and KT.
In 2018, he was a member of SK’s Korean Series championship, and in 2021, he was a member of KT’s combined championship. He is a player who has two Korean Series championship rings.
Including LG, there are 6 professional team uniforms. It can be seen as a ‘uniform collector’. However, he can expect his third Korean Series championship ring this year. LG is leading the way. The possibility of winning the regular season is very high. Actually reserved.
If he goes straight to the Korean Series and smiles until the end, Heo Do-hwan will have his third Korean Series championship ring. Heo Do-hwan qualified as a free agent after winning KT, but did not receive much attention. LG extended its hand under the condition of a total of 400 million won for two years, and Heo Do-hwan, who took that hand, is heading to the highest stage once again.
Heo Do-hwan was a backup catcher during his SK and KT days. During the SK days, Lee Jae-won was the starting catcher and led the team to victory in the Korean Series, but Heo Do-hwan was also there. During the KT days, there was Jang Seong-woo, but after him there was Heo Do-hwan.
Heo Do-hwan, who hit his second home run of the season in the last SSG game, said, “It is difficult (because I am not playing regularly), and it is even more difficult as I get older, but it is something I have to do as a baseball player, and I think I have to do more for the team.” Although he is not in a role that receives flashy lighting, he is a player who quietly accomplishes his job.
He pledged, “I am so grateful to the fans, and although there is not much left in the season, I will do my best to maintain first place until the end.” Attention is being paid to whether he will be able to keep his promise and walk down the path to glory of winning the Korean Series for the third time this year.