The San Diego Padres introduced new infielder and former Korean Baseball Organization star Ha-Seong Kim via a Zoom press conference Tuesday evening, and Kim was confident and bold with what he had to say.
Speaking primarily through an interpreter, Kim said "The Padres is not only a contender but will become the World Series champion this year. I want to be part of a winning team. That's why I joined the San Diego Padres."
Kim also added that he wants to win the National League Rookie of the Year award.
Kim played shortstop in Korea, but said he can play any position in the infield. The Padres, who signed the 25-year-old to a 4 year $25 million contract, value his positional flexibility.
With regards to concerns about making the transition from the Korean Baseball Organization (KBO) to Major League Baseball (MLB), Padres General Manager A.J. Preller says he believes the make-up of the Padres team will really help Kim.
"Really confident about the support team we have around Ha-Seong. I think the fact that we have a really good, young, fun, talented team that cares about individual players and appreciates players and their talent, I think that will help in the transition."
The top sports headlines of the day
Preller also believes that Kim can contribute right away.
"He's a winning major league player and he's going to be a big-time contributor for us," Preller said.
Kim batted .306 with 30 homers last season in the KBO.
LISTEN: With NBC 7 San Diego's Darnay Tripp and Derek Togerson behind the mic, On Friar will cover all things San Diego Padres. Interviews, analysis, behind-the-scenes...the ups, downs, and everything in between. Tap here to find On Friar wherever you listen to podcasts.