Landers outfielder trying not to let mistake affect defense

November 04, 2022

SEOUL, Nov. 4 (Yonhap) — Playing in the Korean Series for the second time, SSG Landers outfielder Han Yoo-seom has the baseball cliche down pat: he wants to take it one play at a time and make sure he doesn’t try to force the issue.

Two games in, the right fielder has committed a couple of gaffes on defense already in the series against the Kiwoom Heroes. In Wednesday’s Game 2, Han and center fielder Choi Ji-hoon got their calls mixed up and let a fly ball drop between them in right-center field for a double. The Heroes ended up scoring just one run in that inning, as the Landers prevailed 6-1.

Han Yoo-seom of the SSG Landers celebrates his solo home run against the Kiwoom Heroes during the bottom of the seventh inning of Game 2 of the Korean Series at Incheon SSG Landers Field in Incheon, 30 kilometers west of Seoul, on Nov. 2, 2022. (Yonhap)

Han, the 33-year-old veteran, said Friday that as much as he’s trying to stay composed himself, it’s also his job to keep things loose for his younger teammates and help them shake off mistakes like that.

“I told the guys that it was better that we made that mistake early in the game,” Han told reporters at Gocheok Sky Dome in Seoul before Game 3 of the series. “We don’t want anyone to worry about balls being hit in their direction. A misplay like that should keep guys on their toes a little more.”

Han takes a similar, what-me-worry approach to the plate. He said he wasn’t thinking about sitting on a particular pitch when he blasted a solo home run in Game 2, extending the Landers’ lead to 6-1 in the bottom of the seventh.

“I don’t want a million different thoughts going through my head when I am in the box,” Han said. “In a postseason game like this, I think we have to score runs when we can, regardless of the size of the lead. We were up 5-1 but I felt we could still use some insurance. I was just happy to help the team win.”

As the Landers’ cleanup, Han is batting .286/.444/.714 with a home run, two RBIs and two walks.

“My goal is to get on base as often as I can,” Han said. “I am ready to take walks. I am willing to get hit by a pitch coming inside.”