In this Associated Press photo, Kim Ha-seong of the San Diego Padres reacts after sliding home safely against the Colorado Rockies during the bottom of the eighth inning of a Major League Baseball regular season game at Petco Park in San Diego on Wednesday. (Associated Press)
Few players in baseball are as hot as Kim Ha-seong right now.
The South Korean infielder for the San Diego Padres enjoyed his first career four-hit game against the Colorado Rockies at Petco Park in San Diego on Tuesday (local time), going 4-for-5 with two RBIs and two runs scored in a 13-5 victory. It was the first game of a doubleheader,
Kim fell a home run shy of a cycle, as he had two singles, a double and a triple.
Former Texas Rangers All-Star Choo Shin-soo is so far the only South Korean to have hit for the cycle in the majors.
After the productive game, Kim is batting .360/.429/.600 over his past seven games. Over a bigger sample size covering his past 30 games, Kim has a .312/.387/.452 line.
For the season, Kim is batting .252/.335/.379 in 95 games, with six home runs and 37 RBIs.
As a big league rookie in 2021, Kim batted only .202/.270/.352 with eight homers and 34 RBIs in 117 games.
Batting seventh and playing shortstop, Kim singled off starter Ryan Feltner in his first at-bat in the second inning. Then in the fourth, Kim hit a double against the Colorado right-hander.
Then with the score knotted at 3-3 with two outs in the fifth, Kim knocked in a go-ahead run with a single off reliever Jake Bird.
After popping out in the seventh, Kim capped off his four-hit night with a triple in the eighth inning.
With their third straight win, the Padres improved to 59-46, good for the second wild card spot in the National League. They also made the biggest splash at the trade deadline earlier in the day, acquiring talented outfielder Juan Soto from the Washington Nationals, along with first baseman Josh Bell, in exchange for six players.
With Soto in the mix and All-Star shortstop Fernando Tatis Jr. nearing a return from wrist injury, Kim may be pushed out of the starting lineup soon. There had been talks of moving Tatis to the outfield and keeping Kim's excellent glove at shortstop, but the trade for Soto likely means Tatis will stay at shortstop and Kim will be relegated to the bench. (Yonhap)