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Sang-hyeon Kim (02)

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Sang-hyeon Kim (김상현)

  • Bats Right, Throws Right
  • Height 6' 1", Weight 176 lb.

Sang-hyeon Kim has played several seasons in the Korea Baseball Organization. He was picked out of high school by the KIA Tigers and was 3 for 20 in 2001, his KBO debut. In 2002, he hit .313/~.476/.469 in 32 at-bats over 31 games for the LG Twins, with whom he spent his next few years. During 2003, he hit .269/~.351/.445 in 55 games. In 2004, he played 100 games for the Twins and slumped to .242/~.327/.390. He missed the next two seasons, presumably due to military service.

Kim represented South Korea in the 2005 Baseball World Cup, hitting .393/.433/.714 as a DH-3B, leading the South Korean offense. He fielded only .778 at the hot corner. He hit 5th and played DH in the Gold Medal game, going 1 for 4 with two strikeouts; he was one of just 3 Koreans to connect safely off Dany Betancourt in the loss.

In 2007, Kim returned to the KBO and hit .235/~.314/.382 in 121 games, including 27 doubles. He batted .243/~.314/.416 in a somewhat reduced role in the 2008 season. He was then traded to the KIA Tigers with Ki-nam Park for Chul-min Kang.

Kim's career turned around completely in 2009 as KIA's third baseman. He hit .315/.379/.632 with 36 homers and 127 RBI. He led the KBO in slugging (.039 over Dong-joo Kim, the runner-up), homers (3 ahead of teammate Hee-seop Choi, a former major leaguer) and RBI (23 ahead of Hyun-soo Kim), was 7th in average and tied for 6th with 30 doubles. He was named KBO MVP and won Gold Glove.

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