“My mother always tells me not to be lenient with myself. Then I can’t succeed.”
Doosan Bears outfielder Kim Dae-han (23) always goes to the training ground with his mother’s request in mind. His mother is Shim Eun-jung, who played a big role in badminton in the past. Shim won a bronze medal in the women’s doubles at the 1992 Barcelona Olympics by matching her breath with Gil Young-ah, and is a person who won two gold medals in the women’s doubles and women’s team event at the 1994 Hiroshima Asian Games. He knows better than anyone else how much an athlete has to sweat to reach the top, so he always emphasizes to his son, ‘Don’t be conceited’.
Daehan Kim has been in the spotlight since graduating from Whimoon High School and joined Doosan as the first choice in 2019. In high school, he threw a fastball at 150 km/h on the mound and produced a strong batting ball to the extent of being the 4th hitter for the youth national team at bat, so it was only natural that expectations were high.
However, it was not easy to adapt right away to his professional stage. In his 2019 debut season, Kim Dae-han tasted the humiliation of going 0-for-15 in 19 games. For a 19-year-old player, the gaze of ‘of course he will do well’ was a greater burden than he could have imagined. In the end, during the 2020 season, Kim Dae-han decided to enlist with Doosan’s motive and friend Song Seung-hwan (23) on active duty, promising a later date.
Kim Dae-han, who returned from the military service in February of last year, was mature both physically and mentally. Last season, he recorded a batting average of 0.240 (23 hits in 96 at-bats), OPS of 0.763, 4 home runs and 11 RBIs in 51 games with the first team, washing away the pain of his debut season a little. Defensive coach Cho Seong-hwan welcomed the change in his disciple, saying, “(Kim) Dae-han started with high expectations, but now he seems to have put down that burden. His expression has become brighter.”
This year is more important to judge the true value of a promising prospect in the first nomination. Doosan coach Lee Seung-yeop has been consistently evaluating Kim Dae-han’s potential since the finish camp in October of last year. Hitting coach Koji Goto also picked Daehan Kim as one of the hitters with good pace in the Australian spring camp.
Daehan Kim often spins the bat to the point of falling into a trance these days. He said, “If I do it for a while, I don’t know how much time is passing. My mom always tells me not to be lenient with myself, then I can’t succeed, so I don’t want to be lenient with myself. Time passed by. Even in Australia, when I was with the coaches, I hit like crazy.” His earnest desire to do well at bat is shown in his training volume바카라.
Coach Goto always emphasizes confidence to Daehan Kim, who is not satisfied. Kim Dae-han expressed his gratitude, saying, “Coach Goto thinks you are the best and always instills in you to go to bat. There is no one who says you can’t hit, and you instill confidence in your swing.”
Kim Dae-han wore number 37 from last season. It was the number used by right fielder Park Gun-woo (33), who transferred as a free agent to the NC Dinos after the 2021 season. Park Gun-woo hit the FA jackpot at 10 billion won in 6 years, but Kim Dae-han promised that when his heyday came, he would grow into a player who surpassed his predecessor No. 37.
Kim Dae-han said, “I want to do better. I really want to do better than Park Kun-woo when I reach the peak of my career. I want to hear that I was the best among Doosan outfielders (by the time I retire).”
Shim, the mother of Kim Dae-han, whom we met at the rookie draft in 2019, told her son, “Even if you are the best player in high school right now, adult baseball will have a different color from amateur baseball. Even if you can’t go up, you can always go to the first team if you have the skills. I hope you become a good player who never thinks in a hurry and takes steps slowly.” As her mother feared, her son has been in labor pains on the professional stage, but has grown stronger over the past four years.
His son, following his mother’s advice, is moving step by step towards his success. This year, as outfielder José Rojas (30) joined as a new foreign hitter, competition in the outfield became more intense, but Kim Dae-han said, “Whoever comes, I have to compete, and I have to win. If I win the competition, I will go out.” I was determined to take over and spend my first full-time season with the first team.