Lotte Giants outfielder Ahn Kwon-soo shook off a slugging slump to lead his team to its third straight win and a three-game weekend series sweep.메이저사이트

Ahn Kwon-soo, starting in left field and batting ninth in the lineup, went 2-for-4 with a home run, two RBIs, one stolen base and one run scored in Lotte’s 6-5 win over the 2023 Shinhan Bank SOL KBO League KIUM Heroes on Sunday at Gocheok Sky Dome in Seoul.

Ahn Kwon-soo led off the top of the third inning with an infield single, ending a four-game hitting drought the day before. Then, in the top of the seventh inning, with Lotte leading 1-0, he hit a two-run double with runners on first and second to extend the lead to 3-0.

Ahn Kwon-soo’s performance continued. After stealing second, he advanced to third on Kim Min-seok’s infield grounder and scored on Park Seung-wook’s RBI double to give his team an insurance run.

The defense was also stellar. Two batters later in the inning, he made a picture-perfect sliding catch of Lee Won-seok’s grounder to second base to end the inning. In the bottom of the sixth inning, he made a flying catch of Lee’s foul ball at first base to take the pressure off starter Charlie Barnes.

Lotte manager Larry Sutton said before the game, “Ahn Kwon-soo plays Golden Glove-level defense and makes his presence felt on the bases and at the plate,” and he responded to his manager’s praise with a great play.

After the game, Ahn Kwon-soo said, “I feel good that the team won rather than what I did well. I’m especially happy to continue the winning streak,” he said, adding, “I will continue to work hard to help Lotte play winning games.”

Ahn Kwon-soo is Lotte’s “belly button” this year. After being unable to re-sign with the Doosan Bears due to military service after the end of last season, Ahn has been playing above and beyond expectations in the offense this year in a Lotte uniform.

His batting has been slow since May due to elbow pain, but Ahn is quickly regaining his form. He’s recently gotten back to full strength and is poised to contribute to the team’s race for the top spot.

“I kept thinking about what I could do even if my elbow wasn’t good,” Ahn said. I’ve been focusing a lot on simplifying my swing, team batting, and defense lately,” said Ahn.

“I have to do the best I can when the team needs me, rather than my personal performance and results,” he said, adding, “For the rest of the season, no matter what situation I am in, I will play the baseball the team needs.”

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