Noh Si-hwan (23-Hanwha Eagles) has cooled off.
Noh has been in a hitless slump for his last 35 at-bats (31 at-bats) until his last game against the LG Twins on April 21. His batting average, which was as high as .359, has now dropped by more than three percent (to .294). It’s the first time this season that his batting average has dropped below 30%. His batting average was steady in April, when he was struggling to hit for power.
It was a combination of slump and bad luck. Noh had a .472 monthly batting average until the 13th, just before his no-hit streak. From the 10th to the 12th, he hit a home run in three consecutive games. From the opening day to the 13th, Noh’s hard-hit percentage (over 150 kilometers per hour) was 45.3% (2nd overall). After the 14th, however, his hard-hit percentage is less than half, at 21.1%.
That’s not bad enough to lead to a no-hitter. Socrates Brito (KIA Tigers – 22.7%), who doesn’t have the same strong batted ball rate as Noh, had 10 hits during this period. Noh also had a low walk rate (12.1%), a high strikeout rate (24.2%), and an 84.4% contact rate. That’s not too far off from his numbers through May 13, when he was batting .359 (10.2% walk rate, 19.1% strikeout rate, 73.5% contact rate).
However, the lack of results is beginning to show that he is psychologically chased. On the 20th, KBS N Sports commentator Kim Tae-gyun, who was in charge of the game, analyzed that “the left wall (in his batting form) has collapsed” during the broadcast. When a good hit is made, “the left wall is maintained, so the ball flies to the fence,” he said. In the next game on the 21st, he had a passive performance. When he struck out looking to LG’s Jung Woo-young, MBC Sports Plus commentator Jung Min-cheol said, “He seems to be thinking too much.”
As lucky as he was, he also had his share of bad luck. Before the no-hitter, Noh’s BABIP (batting average on balls in play) was 0.411. However, his BABIP dropped to 0.336 after the no-hitter. That’s close to his career mark (0.324).안전놀이터
Hanwha manager Choi Won-ho tried to shake things up by moving Noh around in the batting order, but it’s up to Noh to overcome his struggles. Choi said, “Kim Hyun-soo (LG) also went 0-for-34 at the beginning of the season. I don’t know how Noh Si-hwan is feeling on the inside, but he’s fine on the outside. I didn’t talk to him because it might bother him more if the coach talked to him from the sidelines,” he said, adding, “(The slump) is only a short-term problem, so we just need to make sure the player doesn’t get sick.”