“I agreed with (Yoo) Gangnam to split it 6-4.”
The star of the show at Busan’s Sajik Baseball Stadium was undoubtedly Chae Eun-sung, who won the home run race on the 14th, securing 5 million won in prize money, and then took home 10 million won for being the MVP of the main all-star game on the 15th. He started at first base as the No. 3 hitter for the Nanum All-Stars and went 2-for-3 with a home run and five RBIs to lead the team to an 8-4 victory.
It was an MVP-worthy performance. Chae got things started in the top of the first inning with an RBI double to right-center field for a 1-0 lead. In the bottom of the fourth inning, with two outs, she hit a grand slam to left field off Lotte’s Koo Seung-min to extend the lead to 8-0. The Nanum All-Stars’ victory and Chae Eun-sung’s MVP honors were virtually sealed.
It was even more special because it was only the second time in the history of the All-Star Game. The first All-Star Game grand slam was hit by Kim Yong-hee, a KBO game manager who was named Mr. All-Star on July 4, 1982, during the third All-Star Game at Dongdaemun Stadium. Chae Eun-sung became the first player to hit an All-Star Game grand slam 41 years after Kim Yong-hee, tying the record for the most RBIs in an All-Star Game (5 by SK Hanyusum in 2019).
It was inevitable that the prize money would come first. Chae Eun-sung discussed the issue of splitting the prize money with Lotte catcher Yoo Kang-nam, who pitched the batting cage when she won the home run race. Yoo suggested splitting the 5 million won in half, but Chae Eun-sung said she needed to think about it.
A day later, the issue was resolved. “I had dinner with (Yoo) Gangnam and we talked about it. When I first told him, I didn’t expect to win, so I asked him to split it 5-5, but he said that 5-5 was a little too much for his conscience. It was his birthday, so we decided to split it 6-4,” she said.
Chae Eun-sung was more than happy to share her winnings with Yoo Kang-nam, and she enjoyed the star-studded festival to the fullest. An extension of that was Man Rupo.
Chae Eun-sung said, “I feel awkward. I wonder if I should be here (in the interview room). It was a perfect inning, but I wasn’t greedy. I wasn’t aiming for something. I thought he was going to throw a fastball in the first inning, so I tried to hit it lightly, but I think it went over. I didn’t get too greedy,” he reflected.
When asked if winning the Home Run Run Race had any effect on his batting, he said, “I don’t think so. I think I was trying to get the points in front. I think Gangnam has a good batting ball, which helped me adjust the points,” he laughed.온라인바카
Good things come to those who enjoy them. Chae Eun-sung said, “I actually thought Socrates (KIA) was going to win, so I wasn’t interested. I came with the intention of participating, but I came with the idea of having fun. The person I was aiming for didn’t work out (laughs). I came with the idea of playing the same way,” he said.
She hoped the good vibes from the All-Star Game would carry over to the second half of the season for her team, Hanwha. “The team’s mood is getting better, and we won in a tight game. I think we can start the second half in a good mood. We need to share the good momentum,” she said encouragingly.