“There were players recommended by Sanchez…” After much consideration, Hanwha’s choice was Kim Hyun-soo’s ML days competitor

After twists and turns, Hanhwa found a new foreign hitter. He was found in Mexico, not the United States. Nick Williams (31), a left-handed outfielder from the major leagues, has been selected as Hanwha’s new foreign hitter.안전놀이터

On the 18th, Hanwha officially announced a contract with Williams for a total of $450,000 (down payment of $150,000, annual salary of $250,000, and incentive of $50,000). It has been 18 days since the release of Brian O’Grady on the 31st of last month. As it took much longer than expected, the back story continued.

Players who made contract offers were called up to the major leagues in succession, and recruitment was repeatedly canceled. did. Regardless of the position, the range of candidates was expanded, but it seldom led to a contract, and more than two weeks passed quickly.

Eventually, from last week, they turned their attention to other leagues other than the United States. One of them is the Mexican League. Foreign players in the team were also recommended. At the end of April, there was a player recommended by Ricardo Sanchez, who is playing an ace level role as a substitute foreign pitcher, in the Mexican League. However, it was Williams who stood out more than this player.

Hanwha coach Choi Won-ho said, “There was a player Sanchez recommended. That player also watched the Mexican League as a bowler. To be honest, the player Sanchez recommended fell short of our expectations. Williams looked the best of the players he could pick up quickly right now. He recorded over .700 (.727) OPS in over 900 career at-bats in the major leagues, and recorded a batting average of .274 (.274) with over 1,000 at-bats in Triple-A. “He’s been doing well in the Mexican League lately,” he explained.

[Pictured] Nick Williams in Philadelphia. ⓒGettyimages (unauthorized reproduction and redistribution prohibited)

[Pictured] Nick Williams in Philadelphia. ⓒGettyimages (unauthorized reproduction and redistribution prohibited)

Coach Won-ho Choi continued, “If you look at hitters who hit well in the Mexican League, there are quite a few players who are too old to defend. Young players with the hotajun style had a risk because their careers were so low that they were single A. In many ways, Williams was the best player in the Mexican League. Last year, Edison Russell (Kiwoom) also played in the Mexican League, but if you look at the batting performance, Williams is better.” I think that the response to the breaking ball will be okay to some extent.”

In fact, in the Mexican League last year, Williams played an active role in 84 games with a batting average of 3.77, 29 homers, 72 RBIs, and an OPS of 1.172. He has a better batting record than Russell, with a batting average of 3.4, 24 home runs, 74 RBIs, and an OPS of 1.120 in 80 games. Russell, who signed with Kiwoom after three years and returned to the KBO League, is recording a batting average of .286, 4 homers, 42 RBIs, and an OPS of .739 in 59 games this season. Even if Williams achieves this level of performance, it will be a great help to Hanwha, who has a weak batting line.

Although Williams has played in Mexico for the last two years, he was once expected as a promising player in the major leagues. After debuting with the Philadelphia Phillies in 2017 and ending with the Chicago White Sox in 2021, he recorded an OPS of . He showed his slugging power by hitting double-digit home runs for two consecutive years with 12 in 2017 and 17 in 2018.

In Philadelphia in 2017, there is also a relationship with Korean outfielder Kim Hyun-soo (LG) and eating rice in one pot. On July 1 of that year, Williams made his big league debut, and less than a month later, on July 29, Kim Hyun-soo was traded from the Baltimore Orioles. Even Aaron Altair, who played an active role in NC in 2020-2021, was in the Philadelphia outfield competition at the time. Philadelphia, which was rebuilding, gave Williams and Altair more opportunities, and Kim Hyun-soo, whose two-year contract ended, ended his life in the major leagues after the season and returned to Korea and signed a free agent contract with LG.

Williams and Altair also failed to develop as much as expected in the major leagues, showing weaknesses in contact and linemanship. Altair was designated for transfer (DFA) from Philadelphia in May 2019 and Williams in August 2020. Altair, who came to Korea in 2020, contributed to the NC’s first championship, and played an active role in 279 games for two years until 2021 with a batting average of 279 games, 63 homers, 192 RBIs, and an OPS of .833. During this period, he struck out 305 strikeouts, the most in the league, but he took advantage of his advantage by ranking third in home runs and fifth in slugging percentage (.528). As a center fielder, he also contributed a lot to defense.

Williams, who came to Korea at the bottom of his career, raises expectations as he had a competitive relationship with Altair. Director Choi Won-ho said, “When I saw the video, the bat speed was good. He struck out a little, but he turned it around with his fast bat speed. The batting order will be either 2 or 5, in front of or behind Roh Si-hwan and Chae Eun-seong. In defense, I have also seen center fielders, but I have been mainly looking at corners since a few years ago. As for the center fielder, Moon Hyun-bin is doing well, so he thinks towards the corner.”

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