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AWARD: International Player of the Week – Ah-Seop Son

 Julian Guilarte - World Baseball Network  |    Jun 20th, 2024 8:46pm EDT

The winner of WBN’s International Player of the Week is NC Dinos designated hitter Ah-Seop Son.

Son set the Korean Baseball Organization record for hits with his 2,505th hit on the road against Doosan Bears starting pitcher Raul Alcantara in the sixth at Jamsil Baseball Stadium in Seoul. He passed LG Twins outfielder Young-taik Park.

Ah-Seop Son, 36, is an 18-year veteran in the KBO. Son went 1-for-4 in the 2-0 loss against the Doosan Bears. After the game, he spoke with Jee-ho Yoo of Yonhap News about his accomplishment on June 20.

“I feel like I’ve been rewarded for my hard work. I’ve had to overcome so much adversity over the years,” Son told Yonhap News.  “So this record makes me feel pretty good.”

It wasn’t always smooth sailing for Son. He was drafted by his hometown, Lotte Giants, in 2006 but broke his hand in his rookie season and only played four games in 2007. It took him until 2010 to become a regular starter in the outfield with the Lotte Giants.

“I honestly didn’t think I’d reach this point. I just battled so hard each and every day,” Son said. “Those days added up and allowed me to put my name in the record books. I’ve come much further than I ever thought possible, and every game is going to feel like a bonus from now on.”

Son was a force with the Lotte Giants, leading the league in hits three times in 2012, 2013, and 2017. His career high in hits is 193 in 2017. He also won four straight Gold Gloves from 2011-2014 and six overall.

Ah-Seop Son left the Lotte Giants after the 2021 season and signed with the NC Dinos.

Last season, Son won the Gold Glove and batting title with an average of .339 with the NC Dinos.

His stats this season are seven home runs, 47 RBI, six stolen bases, a .301 batting average, and an OPS of .748 in 296 at-bats. His career numbers are 181 home runs, 1,033 RBI, 232 stolen bases, a .321 batting average, and an OPS of .850 in 7,769 at-bats.

Son also has a decorated international career, winning the gold medal in the 2015 WBSC Premier 12 at Tokyo in the Tokyo Dome 8-0 against Team USA. He also played for Korea in the 2013 and 2017 World Baseball Classic and the Asian Games in 2014 and 2018.

Photo Credit: Outfielder Son Ah-Seop #31 of Lotte Giants bats in the top of the seventh inning. (Photo by Han Myung-Gu/Getty Images)

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Julian Guilarte - World Baseball Network